William Sydney Mount, another pointless art excursion

My strange tendency, as an art-admirer, is to sometimes over-analyze a painting, not only as the Art itself, but also as a documentation of time and place.  In historical paintings, it’s fun to look for the details and pick up some lost history along the way.  There may be interesting clues in what the artist chose to depict … or not.

rightleft
By William Sidney Mount.

Anybody else notice the left-handed set-up?  Makes me wonder if the artist or model didn’t know the violin well.  Although I expect it would be rare, I think it’s just possible a self-taught individual might learn this way.  It’s a great picture and study but looks like a mirror image if you are intimate with the violin.  Maybe the clue is in the title Left and Right.

This got me thinking about another of his excellent works, The Banjo Player. I had to look again but I seemed to recall it as a lefty too.  And sure enough, a lefty.

The Banjo Player
The Banjo Player

The Sweeney style banjo strikes me as legitimately left-handed as the drone string is reversed.  As a folk instrument it’s easier for me to imagine some variety in design and setup.  But really, there’s not much point in this discussion other than some odd notes about two paintings I’ve thought about for some time now.  If his art appeals to you,  a lot more can be found by clicking the self portrait of Mount below.

William Sidney Mount (1847-1850).
William Sidney Mount (1847-1850).
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