Portrait of Marchesa Luisa Casati1919 by Augustus John

Sir William Orpen painted a portrait, or rather two portraits, of a young woman evidently at a critical moment of her history. People said that she was a spy in Paris, and that the painting was done the day before her execution. There were many divergent tales about the sitter. Mr. John has here two portraits of the same lady, much more sensational in themselves if not in the story. The picture “La Marchesa Casati” is a strange-looking lady with henna hair cut to her neck, very large dark eyes and dark eyebrows, a loose creamy pink dress lit by reddish lights, and the background is blue-green hills and strange evening lights of Italy. Did Mr. John see in this lady the Mona Lisa of the Peace Conference, whose dark eyes under the dark eyebrows and henna hair had looked deep into the pool of knowledge of mankind that the world had brought to the Conference at Paris? Whatever the...
[ https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2015/mar/02/augustus-john-william-orpen-peace-conference-1920]
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