About Me

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Washington, United States
loves: you win if you guessed "pets" and "museums". Also books, art history, travel, British punk, Korean kimchi, bindis, martinis, and other things TBD. I will always make it very clear if a post is sponsored in any way. Drop me a line at thepetmuseum AT gmail.com !

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

the hurdy-gurdy man's dog

thanks wikimedia commons. public domain.
Those guarded, often sad-eyed dogs you see with street musicians are nothing new.  Here's one from the mid-1600's as portrayed by Georges de La Tour (French; 1593-1652).  This fellow is a detail from "Ghironda Player with Dog."  (A ghironda is a sort of hurdy-gurdy.)  In the original painting, you'll see there are a couple of food-like items on the ground next to the dog, a piece of fruit and perhaps a piece of bread; certainly nothing he'd like to eat, but based on the ragged state of his master's cloak, he may have to settle.  De La Tour painted a number of hurdy-gurdy men among his other works, and is distinguished by his strong use of light versus shadow.  If you thought that looked a lot like Caravaggio's work, you're right - he was likely taught by Dutch followers of Caravaggio's work.  Powerful, isn't it?  


parlance said...

A beautiful rendition of the dog. I do tend to notice the dogs with street musicians, aka homeless people, and the dogs are so calm and self-contained. I love to see that no matter how down on his luck the street person may be, he's able to find food for his dog. When I lean down and drop in some money, I'm always giving it for the dog, not the human.

curator said...

Parlance, I have to admit I'm right there with you. Humans can make options for themselves...pets can't.