Over the past eight months, Dutch photographer Tessa Posthuma de Boer has worked intensively on a series of portraits of Henry VIII, his six wives, Thomas More and Thomas Cromwell. She began in response to the ‘Cromwell Trilogy’ by Hilary Mantel, of which the final volume, The Mirror and the Light, was published in spring 2020.
Are you looking at a photograph or a painting? With her photographic collages Tessa Posthuma de Boer creates a bridge, as it were, to the past – ‘they seem ready to move and speak’ – just as Hilary Mantel creates a bridge to the present by writing about a sixteenth-century period in the present tense.
This work represents Catherine of Aragon, (born December 16, 1485, Alcalá de Henares, Spain—died January 7, 1536, Kimbolton, Huntingdon, England), first wife of King Henry VII of England (reigned 1509–47).