arnolfini wedding portrait

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Remember Desperate Housewives? Me neither, but the introduction of the show misused a whole bunch of artworks to show the dismay of women on Wisteria Lane. Let’s back up to 1434, shall we?

Arnolfini’s a wealthy dude livin’ with his lady in Bruges. The lady isn’t pregnant. She’s fashionable. They’re wealthy, draped in excess cloth and furs. They even have a convex mirror! Classy.

He signed the wall, “Jan van Eyck was here, 1434.” Jan van Eyck loves liminal space, meaning the space in between the imagined and the real, the imagined ‘real’ and the real ‘imagined.’ Is he signing the artwork, or his appearance in the painting? Is he making Banksy look like a has-been, or is he just setting the standard of signature as witness?

Whatever you do, don’t ask Teri Hatcher. She’ll NEVER know.

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