The Allegory of Youth

The following art piece displayed at The Blanton Museum of Art in Austin, Texas.

It is called “The Allegory of Youth”, By Domenico Piola.

allegory of youth

Allegory of Youth, circa 1680
By Domenico Piola — Genoa, 1627-1703
Oil on canvas
The Suida-Maning Colection, 467.1999

In its undulating rhythms, multi-colored modeling, and softly modulated light, this painting exemplifies Piola’s mature style.

This picture of a beautiful young woman and an aged winged man holding an hourglass and scythe suggests a common Baroque allegory, Time revealing Truth.
In fact, the explicit vanity of the woman, caught plaiting her hair, echoed by the mirror, and the futile gesture of the little boy as well as the frailty of the proffered flower, shift the meaning to the fleeting nature of physical beauty.

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