Martin Marquart. A Goldsmith and his Hidden Side

21 Jul 2017 – 19 Nov 2017

Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien

Wien, Austria


Save Event: Martin Marquart. A Goldsmith and his Hidden Side

I've seen this

People who have saved this event:


​Point of View #19 showcases the impressive portrait of Martin Marquart, a goldsmith from Augsburg, which was painted around 1560.


 Both the front and the panel’s back - presumably on display for the very first time - now shine in new splendour following a recent restoration intervention. The back features a highly unusual composition: in the presence of a weeping Cupid a satyr presents a nude female figure with a necklace, a symbol of love for sale. We may assume that the male patron – personified by the venal and ugly satyr – has lost the joy of love, hence Cupid’s lamentations; but at least he has enough spare cash to be able to purchase sexual gratification. Marquart presumably commissioned the back when he was older and a widower, in which case the scene should be read tongue-in-cheek, with the depicted goldsmith work also cleverly referencing his profession. Thus the panel may have functioned as a kind of door (of a cupboard or a niche) in the goldsmith’s private quarters where only selected visitors had the opportunity to view its suggestive back. Traces of hinges suggest that one could close or fold it back.


Have you been to this event? What do you think? Join the discussion here!
Remember, you can include links to your instagram pictures and to videos.