Another birthday gift for myself is a part time class at university in Art History; The Mask of Beauty. It covers portraits and fashion during the 16’th throughout the 19’th century.
Nationalmuseum in Stockholm recently released more than 3 000 copy right expired paintings to Wikimedia Commons for free use. Lots of beautiful portraits! My absolute favorite when browsing through them all is “Kål-Margit”, a portrait of a young Dalecarlian girl knitting, by famous painter Anders Zorn. If you ever visit Dalecarlia, don't miss the Zorn-museum!
Why do I like this portrait so much?
First of all; I like portraits of women. Women make up half the population - therefore should be portrayed in proportion to that.
Secondly; I like the natural pose. She sits there carrying on her business, and I just observe. I like paintings of people actually doing something. That someone found it important enough to capture it and preserve it for the future. In this case “it” is knitting, a womens do with too low a status, but still depictured by one of the greatest artists of the country.
Thirdly; She's darn pretty! My not-so-wild guess is that's why she was portrayed. Zorn had a thing for pretty young farm girls…
On a deeper level I guess it has to do with identification - this portrait speaks to me on many levels.
Surface pattern designer who loves folk art, gardening and the good things in life.