Image: Hendrick ter Brugghen, A man playing a lute, oil on canvas. National Gallery, London.
On Wednesday 26th April I’ll be giving my first talk at the National Gallery, London, focusing on the Ter Brugghen’s A man playing a lute. The lute was used by painters to express various ideas, apart from the obvious allusions to harmony and discord. The musical associations with Orpheus, the melter-of-hearts, would not have been lost on the contemporary audience of this painting. Various symbolic links to notions of youth, flippancy and the transience of life and worldly pleasures are also all associated with the mythology of the instrument and its music. Paintings such as Ter Brugghen’s Lutenist allow us to open up a world of understanding how music was appreciated and consumed in the past.
The talk will be accompanied by live Lute Music.