Leda pocket mirror (painting after Michelangelo)

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A make-up mirror with the delightful profile of Leda. Today only copies of the original painting are available. On the canvas the mythological queen turns into a real, flesh and blood woman who surrenders herself to her divine lover. The painting and the wonderful red chalk head study Michelangelo made only can be seen for three months at Museum of Fine Art Budapest's exhibition presenting Michelangelo's draughtmanship. But this tiny souvenir will stay with you for a long time to remind you of the original artwork.

After Michelangelo. Leda and the Swan. Presented by the Duke of Northumberland, 1838 © The National Gallery, London

Exhibition: The Triumph of the Body - Michelangelo and Sixteensh-century Italian Draughtsmanship, 6 April - 30 June, 2019, Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest

Michelangelo's only erotic painting had quite an adventurous journey before arriving to the Francis I's Chateau Fontainebleu. Later, in the 18th century it was condemned immoral and burned. The painting in the National Gallery in London is one of the contemporary copies of leda and the Swan. It differs from Michelangelo's work in a number of details. Whereas the original was painted in tempera on wood, the London paintng is oil on canvas, and it is around half the size of Michelangelo's work. It is therefore cannot have been made after Michelangelo's original, but after a copy. While we must rely chiefly on descriptions and copies of the cartoon when building up the image of what Michelangelo's Leda must have been like, a few preparatory drawings by the artist also survive. The red chalk head study that features in the Budapest exhibition is not only one of Michelangelo's finest drawings, but one of the most beautiful executed during the entire Renaissance.

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Weight 0.02 kg
Size Ø: 75 mm

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