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Velazquez Diego Las Meninas 1656 When placing yourself through the eyes of Diego Velazquez one has many questions These questions range from the obvious observations to the most acute of details However I being an average viewer of art from a background of primarily pop culture had a difficult time selecting exactly what questions to ask this painting The real question that repeatedly surged in my mind was the question of mystification or the process of explaining away what might otherwise be evident112 Was I going to view this art like the general masses and be mystified like Berger predicted I would be Well yes and no When I first looked at the portrait of Las Meninas the first question that came to my mind was why the characters of the painting were positioned in the numerous fashions that they were I immediately thought of the Virgin of the Rocks by Leonardo da Vinci The thought-process was that both paintings consist of a central figure Although in both there are other characters engaging in separate activities Then I realized that I had already mystified the art by seeing it through the painting Virgin of the Rocks rather than viewing the painting through the eyes of the artist Diego Velazquez My initial experience with this art was similar to the process of mystification I was explaining away what the artist wanted me to see The only absolute way to see the art for what it could possibly convey was through a Berger analysis Once again I asked myself why the characters were positioned the way they were My eyes first focused on the little girl in the center of the painting It is true that the girl in the center dominates the scene both by her dignity for she has already the air of one who is habitually obeyed and by the exquisite beauty of her pale gold hair And who are in background The
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