The Background of a Portrait

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STILLS

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STILLS

WORK DATA

Lecturer:
Category:
EVENT
Type:
presentation
Keywords:
art history / machine / metaphor / painting / portrait / symbol
Creation Date:
2007-03-24
Language:
Hungarian
Description:
The inner title page of Farkas Kempelen’s book Mechanismus der menschlichen Sprache nebst der Beschreibung seiner sprechenden Maschine, published in 1791, features a portrait of Ignác Born. For unknown reasons, this picture was left out of the first Hungarian edition, which was published in 1989. The etching of Born was made by Johann Ernst Mansfeld, based on a (since then destroyed) painting by Heinrich Füger. The portrait, which is presented in an oval, architectonic frame, depicts Born with his right elbow on a writing desk, his head resting on his hand. In the background, a painting is visible – picture in a picture? picture on the wall of an imagined room? – with two figures on it. One is a female figure with a shawl or veil covering her head and leaving her upper body exposed, her hands resting on her bare breasts – of which she has more than the usual number –, the other is a young man, who, with a compass-like object in his left hand, glances back at the woman. (...) (M.P.)

More Information

Original Title (Hungarian):
Egy portré háttere
Location:
Budapest, Műcsarnok, Törley-terem / Kunsthalle, Törley Hall