Metamorphoses of Death, Memory and Presence- Translated by Anda MacBride
Edited By Katarzyna Fazan, Anna R. Burzynska and Marta Brys
Małgorzata Paluch-Cybulska – Tadeusz Kantor: ... Velázquez’s Infantas as Sacred Relics or Madonnas
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Tadeusz Kantor: ... Velázquez’s Infantas as Sacred Relics or Madonnas
Las Meninas1 by Diego Velázquez is a painting which has been subject to intensive scrutiny and ceaseless discussion almost from the moment that it was painted in 1656. The apparently realistic composition with a clear message – depicting the infant princess Margarita Teresa surrounded by her maids of honour, with the painter himself standing at his easel; with the royal couple reflected in the mirror – has an ambiguous structure, leaving the viewer with multiple possibilities of interpretation which are not mutually exclusive (fig. 21). The abundant critical literature devoted to the painting since the 17th century ‘fails to link knowledge to understanding’, as Joel Snyder, one of the researchers, observes.2 The body of criticism has selectively been presented in Polish in Tajemnica Las Meninas: Antologia tekstów [Mystery of Las Meninas: Critical Anthology],3 compiled by Andrzej Witko.
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