Hans Eworth (who is sometimes also known as Hans or Jan Ewoutz/s) was a Netherlandish painter, jeweler, goldsmith and merchant who emigrated to London in the fall of 1544 in order to escape the Catholic Court of Antwerp. By 1550 Eworth was creating some of the most unique and important portraits of the period in England. My work focuses upon Eworth's entire life--from his birth (probably) in Hoorn (c. 1515-1520) to his death in Antwerp c. 1579. I am interested in his experience as a transnational stranger-painter and merchant, the body of work he created during his life, and in questioning the discourse that surrounds these works today.
There is, sadly, much that remains unknown about this artisan's life. Although I have uncovered new information about his biography, there is still a great deal that may never be known. We do not, for example, have a known portrait of him; we may never have any idea what he looked like. In addition, thus far at least, there is data about his formal training, which occurred before he emigrated to Antwerp in 1540. What remains, then, are the nearly 90 works of art that have been or will be attributed to him or his workshop. They are among the most moving and unique of works created in mid-sixteenth century London and are a testament to his incredible skill as a painter. It is my great privilege and joy to be able to study and share them with others.
Below you will find a short selected bibliography of (fairly) available sources on Eworth. It is important, however, to keep in mind that there has not been a significant treatment on this artist published in thirty years; a great deal of new information as well as many newly discovered works have come to light since then and these older texts should be weighed against this. To that end, in the side bar you will shortly find a copy of an essay co-authored by Dr. Tarnya Cooper and I on Eworth's life and works that will offer a completely new assessment of this important artisan. The essay is slatted for publication in the spring of 2014 as part of the Making Art in Tudor Britain project at the National Portrait Gallery, London. I am grateful for the opportunity to have my research published alongside that of my esteemed colleagues as well as the great gift of sharing a bi-line with Dr. Cooper.
At right you will also find a link to a page with links to several of Eworth's important pictures. Unfortunately many of Eworth's works are in private collections and are therefore not available for public viewing. However, the group that I have selected to link to is, I think, representative of his great skill as a painter. Enjoy!
- Hope Walker
Selected Bibliographyvan Claerbergen, Ernst Vegelin. The Portrait of Sir John Luttrell: A Tudor Mystery. London: Jistlynn Ltd., 2000.
Cust, Lionel. "The Painter HE," The Walpole Society Journal, 2, 1913, 1-44.
Hearn, Karen, ed. Dynasties: Painting in Tudor and Jacobean England 1530-1630. London: Tate Publishing, 1995. [Chapter Three]
Piper, David. "The Elusive Identity of Eworth," Country Life, 108, December 16, 1965, 1675-1680.
Strong, Roy C. Hans Eworth: A Tudor Artist and His Circle. Leicester: Museums and Art Gallery, 1965.
Strong, Roy C. "Hans Eworth Reconsidered," The Burlington Magazine 108(758), May 1966, 222-233.
Varkonda-Bishop, Linda. "Haunce the Drawer: A study of the life and works of a Tudor artist." Ph.D. Dissertation. Florida State University, 1979.
Waterhouse, Ellis. Painting in Britain 1530 to 1790. 4th Edition ed. London: Penguin Books Ltd, 1978. [Chapter 2]