Girl with a cup (1850), by Danish painter Constantin Hansen
It’s one of those paintings one finds on the web, they talk to you, you find them 2 weeks ago, they compel you to write about them two weeks later.
A little of Vermeer, Chirico and Balthus in this painting of a girl drinking from a cup. Her gaze is half interrogation and half wonder, but a defiant gaze nevertheless, as if she knows more than she’s willing to admit, and more too, than you would expect her to. There is quite a bit of sadness too, sadness not so much of a girl, but of a grown woman trapped in the body of a girl. As with many interesting 19th century works, it’s hard to tell, is it a kitschy guilty pleasure or just a good painting?