I employ the techniques of the Old Masters and in my portraits and allegorical works. This painting is an allegory on money. Every gesture, colour and object has a meaning. For example, the richly dressed woman is wearing fox fur tails - the Greeks believed that the wearer took on the nature of the animal's fur they were wearing, which implies that the woman is sly and cunning. She holds a mirror to her heart, implying egotism and vanity and is wearing pearls, which represent the moon. The man to the left is held to the earth by his love of money (gripping the gold casket) the Medusa chain around his neck, and the ruff, which symbolises vanity and greed. By contrast the man on the right is walking away from material and earthly goods. He wears the shell, a symbol of poverty, a rope, the symbol of a burden well carried, and the pilgrim's staff which implies that he has moved from materialism towards spiritual riches. Also he is masked, meaning he is cut off from all temptations that surround him.
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egg tempera and oil paint
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