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Exhibition March 25 − June 7, 2020

Confronting Death: The Old Man and Death by Joseph Wright of Derby, an iconic painting of the Enlightenment

Wadsworth Athenaeum presents an exhibition of one painting "Confronting Death:"The Old Man and Death by Joseph Wright of Derby, an iconic painting of the Enlightenment".

An ancient fable about a tired old man who calls for Death, but soon begins to regret his careless decision, becomes an acute parable at the end of the eighteenth century.

Wright from Derby showed a turning point in this story when the old man realized the tragic consequences of his desires. The power of the mind and the ability to speak for themselves are questioned and ridiculed in this picture by an English artist. Strengthened by an alarming landscape, piercing colors and energetic brush strokes, the painting "The Old Man and Death" is a metaphor of his time, a masterpiece of the Enlightenment.