I’ve had a response to the Eyes Blogs.
The description alongside the painting (and don’t you just love the frame) reads:
Portrait of a Man (Self Portrait) 1443:
The man’s glance and the prominence of the words Als Ich Can (As well as I can) on top of the original frame suggest that this is a self portrait. The motto appears on other paintings by van Eyck. On the lower edge Latin words read: Jan Van Eyck made me on 21 October 1443.
Als Ich Can (intended as "as I/Eyck can") was a common autograph for van Eyck, but on this work it is unusually large and prominent. This fact, along with the man's unusually direct and confrontational gaze, have been taken as an indication that the work is a self-portrait. (Wikipedia)
The other Portrait image sent by E in London is by Giovanni Battista Moroni and titled Portrait of a man with raised eyebrows painted between 1570-75. Moroni (c1520-1579) was an Italian painter of the Late Renaissance period and best known for his elegantly realistic portraits of the local nobility and clergy, he is considered one of the great portrait painters of sixteenth century. (Wikipedia)
This is a beautiful painting and the exhibit label reads:
The man’s dress identifies him as a soldier. His tunic is of the kind worn under a breastplate, whilst the sleeves are of chain-mail. A triangle of light surrounds his head, and draws attention to the creases of his fine white collar. The modest size and setting of the portrait perhaps reflects the sitter’s lack of pretension.
Thankyou E - we all wish we were with you in London to be able to take in the occasional visit to the National Gallery, London.