Friday, January 2, 2009

Vanitas, 2009

Vanitas still life paintings, perennial crowd-pleasers in today’s art museum collections, originated in the Netherlands in the early 17th Century. This was the answer of Dutch protestants to the excesses of the Papal Rome, a not-so-subtle reminder that all earthly glory and material success was, at best, transitory.

At the outset of 2009, as we Americans face a sobering reality, the theme of Vanitas suddenly seems as fresh and timely as ever. Better still, why not a Vanitas Mirror? A dressing table mirror, known as “vanity”, is already a fixture of many bedrooms. The Vanitas Vanity would provide a contemplative note to start the day, to put things in perspective, and to be grateful for what we still have

Happy New Year!
Blogger RWordplay said...

A brilliant notion if the shell of our individual and collective sense of narcissism were not impregnable.
On the other hand, a little reminder that all is vanity might break the spell and we would awake to see that our vanity is disguised self loathing. Yes, this mirror, like the one that spoke the truth to the Evil Queen in SNOW WHITE, might shatter the enchantment that have left us desperate, impoverished souls wandering through the dark, even at the break of day.

January 24, 2009 at 7:36 PM  

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