Frans Hals 1581-1666 BACK

Hals, The Gypsy
The Gypsy
oil on wood 23x20in
The Louvre

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The Gypsy is situated somewhere between a portrait and a genre painting. Her insolent and provocative look are unequivocal. As in other genre portraits of this kind, there is a certain coarseness and squalor that makes this an interesting motif in itself. What is important here is the sense of transience and spontaneity that leaves no time time to question the moral content of this work. Hals' genre portraits are positively immoral. THey glorify sensual perception and visual pleasure, making it seem ridiculous to reflect on the meaning behind them.

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