Physiognomy Of Money

moneyley
Interchangeably, bankers, financial industry in general and Wall Street in particular never fail to take one of the first 5 places on the podium of most hated “entities” in the opinion of a wide cross-section of the U.S. population. bankersNearly 3 years since Occupy Wall Street first encamped just feet away from Wall Street, for many people the OWS slogan “Shit’s Fucked Up And Bullshit” still rings true.

But this post is not about banks too big to fail or the unimplemented Dodd-Frank regulations. It’s about sentiment toward moneylenders, bankers, tax collectors that seem to be as constant as love and death, as expressed and masterfully depicted in art of days bygone.

moneylender

Quentin MASSYS. The Moneylender and his Wife (1514) Oil on panel, 71 x 68 cm Musée du Louvre, Paris

 Quentin Massys. Suppliant Peasants In The Office Of Two Tax Collectors.

Quentin Massys. Suppliant Peasants In The Office Of Two Tax Collectors.

moneylender

Marinus van REYMERSWAELE, Flemish painter (b. ca. 1490, Reymerswale, d. ca. 1567). The Tax Collectors

Marinus van REYMERSWAELE. The Tax Collectors 1540s Oil on panel, 94 x 77 cm Louvre, Paris

Marinus van REYMERSWAELE. The Tax Collectors. 1540s, Oil on panel, 94 x 77 cm, Louvre, Paris

The counters of money (around 1575-1600); This table shows an anonymous composition after Marinus Claez. van Reymerswaele representing Antwerp loan sharks. Musée des Beaux-Arts.

Anonymous composition after Marinus Claez van Reymerswaele (around 1575-1600) Antwerp loan sharks. Musée des Beaux-Arts.

Gerrit DOU,  The Moneylender (1664) Oil on wood, 29 x 23 cm, Musée du Louvre, Paris

Gerrit DOU, The Moneylender (1664) Oil on wood, 29 x 23 cm, Musée du Louvre, Paris

And, of course, the redemptive calling of St. Matthew.

Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio (1571-1610). The Calling of St. Matthew, c.1598-1601 (oil on panel)

Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio (1571-1610). The Calling of St. Matthew, c.1598-1601 (oil on panel)

The painting depicts the story from the Gospel of Matthew (Matthew 9:9): “Jesus saw a man named Matthew at his seat in the custom house, and said to him, “Follow me”, and Matthew rose and followed Him.” Caravaggio depicts Matthew the tax collector sitting at a table with four other men. Jesus Christ and Saint Peter have entered the room, and Jesus is pointing at Matthew. A beam of light illuminates the faces of the men at the table who are looking at Christ. (Wikipedia)

Where are the great masters of the past to breath life onto the canvas and preserve for posterity these distinguished faces:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s