Angelika Kauffmann was born in Chur and is regarded as one of the greatest 18th-century women artists and one of the leading champions of neoclassicism. As a member of the Royal Academy she frequented London’s aristocratic and intellectual circles, and as a portrait painter was very much in demand far and wide. But her contemporaries likewise highly praised her mythological and allegorical compositions, which adhered to virtues considered characteristic of the classical art of antiquity.
In a self-portrait with a bust of Minerva the painter depicts herself as a self-assured and sophisticated cosmopolitan lady. Dressed in precious fabrics, the only typical attributes alluding to her status as an artist are a drawing pencil and a folder of drawings. Besides this masterpiece, the Collection of the Art Museum Graubünden boasts additional major works by Angelika Kauffmann.