The talk will be held in German.
The Cryptoportrait – Form, Function and Subversive Practice
The term cryptoportrait refers to images of historical persons that are imported by artists into Christian, mythological or allegorical pictorial themes, in order to make a comment and to give the subject of the picture a second level of meaning. However, these are not image of the patron of the picture or self-portraits, but people whom, at first sight, one would not have expected. It need hardly be said that this form of pictorial practice developed alongside the spread of engravings, which made a person‘s appearance known to a wide circle of recipients. Thus it is, above all, people like Luther, Erasmus or Michelangelo who, again and again, can be discovered in pictures of that period. The paper will first present examples of this little-studied topic, and will then look for possible contexts in art theory.