The King's Painter
The Life of Hans Holbein
From a distinguished art historian, a dramatic reappraisal of Renaissance master Hans Holbein, whose art shaped politics and immortalized the Tudors
Hans Holbein the Younger is chiefly celebrated for his beautiful and precisely realized portraiture, which includes representations of Henry VIII, his advisors Thomas More and Thomas Cromwell, his wives Jane Seymour and Anne of Cleves, and an array of the Tudor lords and ladies encountered during the course of two sojourns in England. But beyond these familiar images, which have come to define our perception of the age, Holbein was a multifaceted genius: a humanist, satirist, and political propagandist, and a deft man whose work was rich in layers of symbolism and allusion.
In The King’s Painter, biographer Franny Moyle traces and analyzes the life and work of an extraordinary artist against the backdrop of an era of political turbulence and cultural transformation, to which his art offers a subtle and endlessly refracting mirror. It is a work of serious scholarship written for a wide audience.