Sheet: 59.2 x 49.4 cm (23 5/16 x 19 7/16 in.); Platemark: 40.9 x 38 cm (16 1/8 x 14 15/16 in.)
Carole W. and Charles B. Rosenblatt Endowment Fund 2001.58
Catalogue raisonné: Olufsen & Svensson 39
Edition: 150 in black and white and 75 in color
Peter Vilhelm Ilsted and his brother-in-law, the painter Vilhelm Hammershøi, pioneered a style of Danish art that was characterized by quiet interior scenes in muted colors.
Peter Vilhelm Ilsted was one of only a few artists of his time to take up mezzotint, the printmaking technique used here. The process involved a tonal reversal—with the artist working from dark to light—that allowed Ilsted to render evocative and moody interiors. Like this print, most of his works were inhabited by young women seen from behind or in profile and involved in introspection or study. The subject of this work appears in darkness at the far side of the image, just beyond a patch of dramatic sunlight that enters the space and perhaps suggests her distance from the outside world.
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