Antonio Francesco Mensi, Portrait Of A Priest


United Kingdom

DC Member since 2020
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Antonio Francesco Mensi, Portrait Of A Priest

A fine 19th-century portrait of a seated Roman Catholic priest by Italian painter, Antonio Francesco Mensi (1800-1888). He’s wearing a clerical collar, a buttoned waistcoat over a white shirt, a black coat, and a gold pocket watch chain with religious iconography.

We imported the painting from Rome and the subject is likely Italian. We love his nonchalant expression and posture - with one arm casually draped over the chair. How do you feel about him?

Mensi was a gifted artist - note the attention to detail on the hand with its visible bone structure and perfectly rendered fingers. The pocket watch chain is also a masterclass in light and shade.

Mensi's talent was spotted from an early age and he gained an apprenticeship at the studio of Paolo Borroni (1749-1819). Following on from this, he trained at the Academy of Fine Arts in Florence under Pietro Benvenuti (1769-1844). He's particularly known for his neoclassical religious scenes but also produced numerous portraits, including for Prime Minister, Urbano Rattazzi.

The portrait is signed/dated and held within a gilded frame with a decorative inner border.

Medium: Oil on canvas
Overall size: 29” x 34½” / 74cm x 88cm
Year of creation: 1862
Provenance: Italy
Condition: Very presentable following a light restoration. Areas of craquelure but the paint layer is stable. Canvas relined. Frame with some age-related wear.


  • H: 88cm (34.65in)
  • W: 74cm (29.13in)
  • D: 4cm (1.57in)



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Telephone: +44 (0)1684 215986



32A Belle Vue Terrace
Great Malvern
WR14 4PZ
United Kingdom


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Brave Fine Art is a boutique art dealership based in the picturesque Malvern Hills, England. Established in 2017, our clients include private collectors and interiors designers throughout the UK, USA and Canada. We tend to focus on decorative art that captures the imagination - from monumental 17th-century portraits through to characterful vintage landscapes. Every piece in the collection has an interesting story to tell and we work hard to discover the hidden history behind each one.

You may have seen us mentioned in popular magazines such as Vogue, Livingetc and Homes & Gardens. It’s always exciting to spot a piece we recognise in a beautiful home or place of work. Do feel free to contact us as we’re always happy to share further information. We also offer a finding service if you’re working on a project for a client or need that special piece for your home.

Normal opening hours are 10am - 5pm Tuesday - Saturday. Private viewings are most welcome and available on request.

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