Friday, October 04, 2013

Who Painted This? #47

Who painted this? #47
This week there are two changes to the normal challenge.
  1. This is another crop of a painting. Remember the rules - you can only use WORDS to identify this painting via a database of paintings.  
  2. You need to tell me - as a comment on this blog - who this is, which painting she features in and who painted her.  Tell me also what you can find out about this artist. 
This week the winner will be the person with the BEST answer rather than the first to respond - so you don't have to rush and have got time to do some research.

For those who've not risen to the challenge before please take a minute to read the rules - see below.  The questions which need answering don't stop at "Who painted this?"

How to participate in "Who painted this? #47"

PLEASE make sure you read the rules before posting a comment - and ONLY POST ON THIS BLOG what you think is the answer.
Click this link to read THE RULES for participating in this challenge (this saves having to copy them out for each post!).

In short:
  • use your brains not software to find the answer
  • search using words only on a database of images
  • leave your answer as a comment on this blog
  • if correct it will not be published until the next post - which provides the answer
  • if wrong it will be published
  • do not leave the answer on Facebook!
  • the winner - who gets a mention and a link on/from this blog - is NOT THIS WEEK the first person to give me a completely correct answer for ALL the things I want to know. It's the person who provides the BEST answer (see above)

Who Painted This #46 - The Answer

Self-portrait by Albrecht Durer, Prado Museum Madrid
Self Portrait (1498) by Albrecht Durer
Museo Nacional del Prado
This is an In-depth analysis of Dürer's Self-Portrait, 1498 providing discussions about:
  • Composition discusses the influences on the composition and his use of miniaturist techniques for the background
  • Iconography. The Artist as “gentiluomo”  Focuses on the clothing, the eyes and the hands.  Here's what is has to say about the eyes - which a lot of people commented on in their responses to last week's post
The eyes from Durer's 1498 self-portrait
Dürer’s restrained, calmly proud gaze indicates his desire to convey his social status. He has focused the eyes in two slightly different directions in order to enliven the figure’s gaze. His left eye, which is further away, looks directly out at the viewer while his nearer, right eye, looks into the distance. This slight disjunction was used by later portraitists including Hans Holbein the Younger.
In order to paint his Self-portrait, Dürer used a flat mirror which he could have acquired on his first trip to Venice (1494-1495), where it is known that they could be found in the late 15th century. As a result and for the first time the artist was able to completely invert his body and his left arm (which appears to our right) is as visible as the right.

Who guessed correct?

Who painted this #46? - the change in approach threw up some new people responding to the challenge.  Hence why we're continuing with this approach this week.

Paschalis Dougalis was first to name the artist correctly but did not follow through with the rest of the information for quite a bit later.

Bernadette Madden yet again was the first person to come up with the correct answer.

Others who got it correct were:

Interestingly, Wiki tells me that this painting once belonged to Charles I of England, and was acquired by Felipe of Spain at auction. Poor Charles lost both his head and his Durer.
Now don't forget - this week it's not first past the post - it's the "best" answer.  See if you can work out what I will find interesting.......


  1. Hi Katherine,

    The painting for "who Painted This? #47" is The Chess Game by Sofonisba Anguissola. This oil on canvas created in 1555 resides at the Museum Navrodwe, Poznan in Poland. Its size is: 72 × 97 cm (28.3 × 38.2 in). it was purchased in 1823 by Atanazy Raczyński, Paris.

    I looked up renaissance paintings with children and it came up!

  2. Artist....Sofonisba Anguissola
    Title....The Chess Game / Portrait of the artist`s sisters playing chess
    Medium...Oil on canvas
    The smiling little girl pictured is Europa Anguissola, the other two sisters are Lucia and Minerva.
    How I found it...I Googled a few painters such as Bronzino and Parmigianino, but the little girl seemed familiar,I knew I`d seen something similar ,possibly in a History of Art book, so looked up the biggest one I have and found Anguissola`s Portrait of the Artist`s Sisters and Brothers ,looked her up on wiki and found most of the details (which sister was which took a bit more searching)
    Anguissola was an amazing woman by any standards.Given the restrictions on women, in her time, she must have been a very determined person to live her life as she did. Born in Cremona, Italy in either 1527 or 1532, she lived a long and successful life, dying in 1625. She was tutored by Michelangelo, became court painter to Phillip 11 of Spain and ,when a very old lady gave advice on art to a very young Anthony Van Dyck, who wrote down her words and also sketched her. From early on she frequently painted herself and her family, often casual and lightly posed. She is considered to have introduced intimate genre painting into formal portraiture , a very new idea at the time. She never sold any work but made her living by the kind of barter system that then existed , living at Court , receiving bed and board ( and beautiful clothes) in return for painting pictures. Though she signed an early Self Portrait "Sofonisba Anguissiola virgin". she did marry, was widowed and then married again. Vasari (who knew her ) writes very highly of her in his Lives of the Artists and also comments on her sisters` talents. Her father was a Humanist and seems to have brought his children up to believe in themselves and their abilities. There was a show of her work in the Museum of Women in the Arts, in Washington, in 1995.....perhaps it`s time for another one
    I love the new type of challenge...I allowed myself to be sidetracked without having to think about time and learned a lot about an extraordinary woman in the process. It`s made me want to read a lot more about her.

  3. Subject: Artists's sister (Minerva?)
    Title: The Chess Game
    Artist: Sofonisba Anguissola
    Date: 1555
    Media: Oil on canvas
    Housed: Poznan, Muzeum Narodowe

    Anguissola set a precedent for female artists as art students. She received a fine arts education and apprenticeships with local tutors. She became the tutor to the queen of Spain and later became the court painter to the king. The art historian Giorgio Vasari considered Anguissola the best female painter of her time. Michaelangelo also recognized her talent. She lived to the ripe old age of 93, which was highly unusual at that time (which is not art related, but still an interesting fact, IMO) . There seems to be some debate on whether this painting is a self-portrait of the artist on the left playing chess with her sisters or a portrait of three of her sisters. There also seems to be a debate on whether this painting signifies the exhibition of intellectual abilities or whether, by taking the queen in the game, the artist is showing that she's won the match and eluding to how she is just as capable as a male artist and should be treated as an equal. I like to think the latter.

    I am an art history student and I studied this artist and this painting in my Studies of Self-Portraiture class two weeks ago.

  4. Well.... bummer dude... I thought I recognized the eyes too but apparently I was off which is why I could not find it. I was sure it was 15th or 16th century italian.

    This one, #47 I don't have a clue, but I'll try anyways.

  5. That's the ticket David - it's amazing what you learn while looking!


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