Help me find this version of The Annunciation
August 22, 2008 1:20 PM   Subscribe

Help me find a particular version of "The Annunciation".

Back in the early 90s I saw a painting of The Annunciation that I'd like to find a jpeg of. Sketchy details follow.

As I recall, it was only Mary depicted against a dark or black background. I think only her upper body was depicted, mainly in profile. The story with the painting was that it had been significantly cropped from its original form. I think it was an older painting, 18th or 19th century, perhaps even older.

I'm not sure where I saw the painting. It may have been in an NYC or Portland, OR museum. It was part of a temporary/traveling show.

I did once find the painting on the web, years ago, but haven't been able to find it again. I think the page I found it on said the painting was in or owned by a museum in Australia. I might be wrong about that though.

I've been through pages and pages of google images and haven't found it. Not much to go on, I know, but does anyone know where I might find it?
posted by DarkForest to Media & Arts (15 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
You could take a look at all the Annunciation paintings available on Wikimedia Commons, the central image database for Wikipedia. Here is another Wikimedia Commons page with lots of Annunciation paintings. This Titian painting is a bit like your description.
posted by husky at 1:44 PM on August 22, 2008

Response by poster: Thanks, husky, but it's none of those. I did like this one though.

In the painting I'm looking for, Mary is reacting/recoiling very strongly to the news, as if in pain or as if trying to shut it out.
posted by DarkForest at 1:55 PM on August 22, 2008

The Palermo Annunciation by Antonello da Messina, perhaps?
posted by peachfuzz at 2:16 PM on August 22, 2008

Here is his eariler take on the same subject.
posted by peachfuzz at 2:22 PM on August 22, 2008

Response by poster: Thanks, peachfuzz. Neither of those is it. I'm pretty sure it's a profile.
posted by DarkForest at 2:27 PM on August 22, 2008

Is this it? I have it on my hard drive, will find out more about it if this is it.
posted by iconomy at 3:32 PM on August 22, 2008

Not your painting, but my favourite Annunciation is definitely Simone Martini's version. The reproduction doesn't do it justice at all (it is very difficult to photograph the golden metal leaf), but if you ever get to change to see the real thing (it's in the Uffizi in Florence) you should. It's amazing.
posted by husky at 3:52 PM on August 22, 2008

Response by poster: iconomy: no, though it fits the description. Thanks. I recall the background being very nearly black.
posted by DarkForest at 4:09 PM on August 22, 2008

Could you try to remember how the face was painted? Was it more like the Martini version posted by husky? Was it like a Byzantine icon, with sharply defined features? Was it more realistic, like Leonardo? More modern than Leonardo, perhaps? Was it painted with oil (which allows layers with transparency to be built up, and is very glossy) or tempura (which is less glossy and more like acrylic--no real layers), or something else?
posted by flibbertigibbet at 4:09 PM on August 22, 2008

Here's another - it's by Jacopo Robusti Tintoretto.
posted by iconomy at 4:17 PM on August 22, 2008

Response by poster: flibbertigibbet: It was unconventional (in my entirely uneducated view) in its starkness and contrast between the dark background and the sharply defined foreground figure. There was nothing in the picture other than Mary herself. The degree of pain and recoil in her face and pose was what struck me. I think it was an oil painting. Definitely not Leonardo, more modern (to my uneducated eye). I was hoping the story about it being cropped from a larger painting would jog someone's memory of it.
posted by DarkForest at 4:25 PM on August 22, 2008

Response by poster: iconomy: no, though that one is interesting...
posted by DarkForest at 4:26 PM on August 22, 2008

Best answer: could it be this:
posted by davemack at 4:32 PM on August 22, 2008

Response by poster: davemack: Yes, thank you!
Didn't quite match my memory, but that's definitely it...
posted by DarkForest at 4:36 PM on August 22, 2008

ha, ha, God bless Google's advanced image search!
posted by davemack at 4:39 PM on August 22, 2008

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