Painted around 1862–1863 in very dark tones, this work has darkened further. It contrasts the 'nutcracker' profile and leathery skin of the old woman with the eager expression and fresh complexion of her youthful companion. The dark background strengthens their profiles and imparts a mysterious drama to their secret conversation. This theme, contrasting personifications of Youth and Old Age, dates back to the Renaissance.
Where to see this painting?
National Museum Wales, National Museum Cardiff
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