A Knight of the Order of the Garter

Sir Peter Lely (Pieter van der Faes) Dutch, British

Not on view

This drawing by Lely, a painter trained in Holland who became a naturalized Englishman, represents a young knight pausing to bow during the great annual ceremonial procession that celebrates the Order of the Garter at Windsor. The work comes from a group considered among the most important Baroque drawings produced in England. Conveying the glamor of Charles II’s restoration court, the image survives as a haunting record of an ambitious, but unrealized, decorative scheme, most likely for a set of tapestries. Delicately applied chalks and pastel blend Lely’s native Dutch naturalism with the elegantly expressive line he admired in Sir Antony Van Dyck, to produce a style that established figure drawing in Britain.

A Knight of the Order of the Garter, Sir Peter Lely (Pieter van der Faes) (British, Soest 1618–1680 London), Black and white chalk, gray pastel, on blue-gray paper

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