Saint Barbara (c.1522). Parmigianino (Italian, Mannerism, 1503-1540). Oil on wood. Museo del Prado, Madrid.
Parmigianino does not follow traditional representations, but represents Saint Barbara in a secular ideal portrait. The attribute, the Tower, is held in the left hand. The halo is barely visible today. Parmigianino painted it with a delicate gold line. The strict profile contour is based on the Neo-Platonic doctrine that outer beauty reflects divine virtue.
François-Hubert Drouais, The Marquise d’Aigurandes - detail, (1759)
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