Nicholas Hilliard's portrait miniatures opens a remarkable window on to the highest levels of English society in the later years of the sixteenth and the early years of the seventeenth centuries. Hilliard's images show us the features of many "celebrities" of his time with a comparative naturalism. He has helped form our ideas for the appearance of among others, Elizabeth I, Sir Francis Drake and James I. "It is impossible to remain immune to the charm and charisma of the works of Nicholas Hilliard", as Karen Hearn illustrates in this book. Karen Hearn gives us an intimate portrait of Nicholas Hilliard, from his life and his work and the techniques he used to produce his exquisite miniatures.
Karen Hearn is curator of Sixteenth and Seventeenth Century Arts at the Tate Britain. She has written books on Marcus Gheeraerts II, Dynasties: Painting in Tudor and Jacobean England 1530-1630 and In Celebration: The Art of the Country House