Clouet, French portraitist, was probably born in Tours, son of Jean
Clouet. He was trained by his father, but little is known about either
of their lives. François went to the French court at an early age,
and after the death of his father, about 1540, succeeded him as court painter
to Francis I. He continued working in that
office under Henry II, who appointed Clouet
valet de chambre and painter-in-ordinary; then worked for Henry II's sons,
Francis II and Charles IX. Contemporary documents give evidence of
his high reputation. His masterpiece, the Portrait
of Elizabeth of Austria, is one of the finest examples of the
period. Portrait of Apothecarist Pierre
Quthe (1562) and Lady in Her
Bath prove Clouet’s involvement with the Italian Renaissance.
The painter may also have had contacts with the School of Fontainebleau.
Painting of Europe. XIII-XX centuries. Encyclopedic Dictionary. Moscow. Iskusstvo. 1999.