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This relief sculpture, officially known as a the Wilbour Plaque, is an artist's reference — a sketch in stone that was hung in the workshop by the hole at the top of the stone, studied and copied by students. The figure on the left is thought to be Akhenaten, oposite him queen Nefertiti, they both wear uraeus headdresses bearing the sacred serpent — emblems of supreme power. 

Akhenaten and Nefertiti

1352 BCE

During the Italian Renaissance it was rare for women to have access to artistic education — but by 1558 Sofonisba Anguissola had already been apprenticed to two painters of the Lombard school, and traveled to Rome to meet and learn from Michelangelo. At the time of this self-portrait, she was just 26 years old, and her career was about to explode.

Self-portrait

Sofonisba Anguissola, 1558

A still from Richard Teschner's 1935 puppet theater production Die Lebens-Uhr, "The Life Clock." The still image shows Teschner's unusual porthole-shaped viewer, giving the audience the impression they are viewing the production through a camera lens ringed by astrological signs.

The Life Clock

Richard Teschner, 1935

Vermeer's Girl with a Pearl Earring is one of the most well known paintings of the modern age. The mysterious girl has been the subject of novels, acted on screen by Scarlett Johansson, and recreated as a Banksy mural — but we know nothing about the girl herself, and with good reason.

Girl with a Pearl Earring

Johannes Vermeer, 1665

For a year and half Rosa Bonheur dressed in mens clothes and wandered the Parisian horse market at the Boulevard de l’Hôpital. Her sketches informed The Horse Fair — a painting of such grand scale that Bonheur called it her “Parthenon frieze.”

The Horse Fair

Rosa Bonheur, 1852 - 1855
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