(b. 1810, Kézdimárkosfalva, d. 1898, Budapest)


Oil on canvas, 106 x 84 cm
Magyar Nemzeti Galéria, Budapest

"What note is a gentleman supposed to write when he is sending a pair of pigeons to a young lady? ... 'Allow me to take the liberty of sending you, dear lady, a pair of doves as a present ... When watching them play, think of your faithful admirer." This is what the Home Secretary of Pest-Buda in the year 1832 suggested to the gentlemen.

The picture shows the home of a daughter of a good family. Her charming face and carriage are typical of the ideals of the last century: she is the symbol of innocence and protection. The pigeon makes the impression of innocence stronger and lets us know that secret emotions will soon wing away out of the cage of the bierdermeier room: a wing of the pigeon indicates that the bird is ready to fly.

The picture is a fascinating one and the way it is painted indicates virtuosity. Whites are rivalling one another in making the portrayal lifelike: the taffeta-like stiff silk dress is glistening as if metal, the soft grey of the feathers makes the white of the wing softer, but it is highlighted by the colour of the arms and the shoulders. The white of the window-post is radiating hard, to which the soft brown of the sunshone table and the fresh red of the rose answer. This picture is a portrait, but it is a perfect genre picture of the age, too ...

© Web Gallery of Art, created by Emil Krén and Daniel Marx.