Purchased with funds provided by Dr. Paul Rahter
The representation of a woman in mourning was a popular theme in Italian painting, particularly Florentine, addressing issues of loss and death which faced women in the early modern period. It is likely that this kind of image was used to feminize a growing number of independent widows, who outnumbered widowers at the time and challenged traditional gender roles. Images like this perpetuated the depiction of the ideal widow, one which has endured into the contemporary age.
This painting was conserved with support from the Stockman Family Foundation in 2012. For details, visit our online conservation exhibit: http://artmuseum.lasalle.edu