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Portrait Miniatures in the Frits Lugt Collection

Portrait Miniatures in the Frits Lugt Collection


Stored safely in a medallion cabinet in the reserves of Hôtel Turgot in Paris, the Fondation Custodia’s collection of portrait miniatures leads an existence hidden away from the public eye. This exquisite, two volume publication gives access to this distinguished collection for the first time. 


Frits Lugt (1884–1970) had a passion for miniatures that began early on in his life. He demonstrated it in the small but ardent Le portrait-miniature of 1917, the year in which he bought the first portrait miniature for his collection. Since then it has been constantly enriched, and now numbers more than 100 works by artists from Great Britain, the Low Countries, France, Germany, Italy, Denmark and Switzerland, covering the period from the sixteenth to the nineteenth centuries.


Thanks to the expertise of specialist Karen Schaffers-Bodenhausen, who has studied the growing collection in recent years with great dedication and patience, we now have this first catalogue of the portrait miniatures in the Frits Lugt Collection, Fondation Custodia, Paris.


In addition to a foreword by director Ger Luijten, the first volume contains detailed descriptions and exhaustive analyses of the portraits, their attributions, and identifications of the sitters. The author also examines the techniques employed and sets out to establish a date for each portrait. The volume closes with a table of concordance, a detailed index of proper names and a comprehensive bibliography. Comparative illustrations are incorporated in the descriptions. The second volume has colour plates of all the works in the collection, almost all of them full size, and concludes with reproductions of the backs of the miniatures if they provide additional supporting information.

  • Karen Schaffers-Bodenhausen

    Portrait Miniatures in the Frits Lugt Collection


    April 2018 

    Published by Fondation Custodia

    Distributed by Ad Ilissum 

    ISBN  978 1 912168 10 1

    270 x 195 mm, 2 vol hardcover, casebound

    277 & 143 pages, 150 colour illus.

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