CODART, Dutch and Flemish art in museums worldwide

Representing Women: Gender and Portraiture in 17th-Century Europe

Online Exhibitions: 1 January 2021 - 1 January 2026

What can portraits reveal about their subjects? This digital exhibition explores this question through ten paintings and prints from the Norton Simon collections that represent women from various social and cultural contexts in seventeenth-century Europe. These women actively participated in shaping their own images, but their roles are often overlooked in favor of the male artists who depicted them.

Rubens (1577–1640), Portrait of Anne of Austria, Queen of France, ca. 1622–25
The Norton Simon Museum, Pasadena

The exhibition is curated by Maggie Bell and includes paintings by Nicolaes Maes, Johannes Verspronck, Rubens, Jacob Ochtervelt, Daniel Mytens and Justus Sustermans, as well as prints by Rembrandt. It is available at