Tag Archives: Dutch Golden Age

The Girl with a Pearl Earring—a vanitas?

James Lindesay Leicester, United Kingdom   Girl with a Pearl Earring. Johannes Vermeer. circa 1665. Mauritshuis. Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons. It is a truism that you only have one opportunity to see a picture for the first time. However, in our image-saturated age, by the time you get to see a famous painting in […]

“The Sick Child” in Scandinavian art

Göran Wettrell Sweden   Figure 1. The Sick Child, Gabriel Metsu, 1660-65, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam Within Western figurative pictorial art there has long been an interest in showing sick children, their psychological attitudes, the effects on the family, and indeed the very reality of disease. One of the best known works on  this subject is by […]

Laughing in the face of death: Ruysch, dark humor & subversion of the memento mori in anatomical art

Stefania Spano Kingston, Ontario, Canada   A history of dark humor La Catarina depicts the skeleton of a high-society woman, created for Día de los Muertos. Image © Tomas Castelazo, www.tomascastelazo.com Humor is an ancient tool for subverting tragedy. Parody and satire persuade audiences that even the greatest of grief can be made comical. Art […]