(b. 1673, Szokolya, d. 1757, Dresden)


Oil on canvas, 87 x 61,5 cm
Magyar Nemzeti Galéria, Budapest

We know only two self-portraits by Mányoki: one from his youth, a washed drawing made in 1693 (formerly in Budapest, Lajos Ernst Collection) and this half-figure portrait showing the mature artist. In his charmingly confident craftsman-portrait he depicts himself at work, holding a palette and brushes in his hand, wearing a shirt with rolled-up sleeves, opening over his chest. In a trick of self-portraits popular since Rembrandt, the soft velvet hat with its upturned rim casts a warm brown shadow over the upper half of his face. Those warm reddish-brown half-shades and the tonal richness of the eyes' area modelled with reflexive lights and kept in shadow represent here a completely new, relaxed pictorial quality as compared to Mányoki's painstaking formation of details made by almost drawing with his brush.

Suggested listening (streaming mp3, 3 minutes):
Johannes Brahms: Hungarian Dance No 6