The Family of Philip IV or Las Meninas
My love of this painting goes back to afternoons spent in a dark auditorium at the University of Michigan, where I took my first art history survey course.
Surrounded by snoring freshman boys. Who mistakenly thought this would be easy.
What I love most is the painting within a painting ... the artist's inclusion of himself in the scene in the mirror at the back ... and the incredible self-possession of the Infanta, the little princess. As she calmly looks you straight in the eye.
And who ARE you? The painter reflected in the mirror? Or someone altogether different?
painting by Diego Velazquez (1599-1660)