Vanity (Frank Cadogan Cowper)

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Vanity, 1907.

Vanity is an oil painting in the Pre-Raphaelite style by Frank Cadogan Cowper, finished in 1907. The painting depicts a woman stealing a glance into a hand mirror because she is so pleased with her own beauty she can't look away. Like with most of the Pre-Raphaelites, the subject is an attractive young woman.

Cowper has expertly painted this piece, the designs and patterns on the clothing are fantastic, the pearls and opal on her head are exquisite, the young woman's hair is golden and wispy. The nearly-black background draws your eye to the woman's contrastedly pale skin.

The thing I like most about this painting is that, even though the woman is extremely beautiful and everything about her is perfect, I feel like she should be extremely annoying to be around because of her self-obsession. All her beauty doesn't make her a good person.