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NF-Lee's Gildor and Frodo

New Art Travesty ~ Frodo as Bronzino's Unknown Man

Posted on 2006.04.16 at 22:25
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~ Detail of Frodo in Bronzino's "Portrait of an Unknown Man"

Just when I was supposed to be working on something else, I stumbled across a lovely portrait by a wonderful Italian portrait painter of the 16th century, Agnolo Bronzino. The pose, the lighting, the colours, the sheer expertise of the painting: I loved it all. I wondered at once how it would do as a Frodo manip....

The original "unknown man" looks very aristocratic, very fashionable -- and how he knows it. He looks quite full of himself, as you will see if you look at him in the Bronzino portrait. I think it is ironic that although his face lives on, his name has been forgotten. He is merely the "Unknown Man."

Imagining it as a Frodo art manip, I knew I wanted to alter the mood of the painting, so I would need a very different sort of Frodo face. I finally chose a screencap from the "parting smile" sequence, when Frodo is boarding the ship for the Grey Havens.

* * *

In spite of the Tudor-era suit of clothes, the resulting "painting" makes a very nice portrait of Mr. Baggins of Bag End. Or perhaps it is Iorhael that is portrayed, Prince of the Halflings. And those are Elvish togs he is wearing, presented by the Elrond to his guest of honour, the hero of the great War of the Ring.

In any case, the supercilious, off-putting dandy has disappeared. Instead, the portrait shows a young man whose open, almost inquiring expression invites the viewer in. Good humour seems to sparkle just behind those eyes, a witticism beginning to gather the corners of his mouth into a smile.

I think I'm in love.

~ Frodo as painted by Agnolo Bronzino, c. 1540:

This is just to show I can still do a manip in which Frodo is dressed.

~ Mechtild

View Frodo Art Travesties Table of LJ Entries page HERE.

View Frodo Art Travesties Album HERE.


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melyanna_65 at 2006-04-19 21:32 (UTC) (Link)
Oh my, this is so great. And it seems the real thing.
I had a look at your other manips, I found all of them stunning.
And it is amazing how Frodo's face is so perfect, pure and beautiful that it fits well in every contest.
Thank you for sharing.
mechtild at 2006-04-20 01:24 (UTC) (Link)
You are welcome, Melyanna, and thanks for commenting. :)

Film-Frodo has such a wonderfully classic face, besides being just plain beautiful, it seemed inevitable to want to see him portrayed in the costumes and look of other eras (besides what Ngila Dickson created for the hobbits of M-E). What better way than to insert him into works of art? I sometimes admonish myself that I am simply playing an elaborate form of "paper dolls".
primula_baggins at 2006-05-20 19:55 (UTC) (Link)
Oh! Lovely, just beautiful. Frodo does lend so well to these old paintings, does he not? Came here via a rec, BTW. Thank you!
mechtild at 2006-05-20 20:01 (UTC) (Link)
I'm pleased as punch that you could drop by. Frodo loves being admired in fancy dress of any era (or no dress at all in the case of some of the Art Travesties *smirky grin*).

If you hadn't noticed, there is a pair of links at the bottom of every Art Travesty entry, one to hook up to the Photobucket Album that has all of them in a gallery (titles and artists for the source images are given if you click them open), and a link to a "table of links" to those manips that have been featured in journal entries. These tell a lot more about the source image, why I chose it, etc.
janejanejane at 2006-05-20 22:19 (UTC) (Link)
I only just discovered your superb work after my dearest friend Ismenin pointed me in the direction of Frodo in Spanish clothes having read of her Inca character Lizhe dressed in Spanish fashion and wishing I could see him...

I've looked at your entire collection and they are fantastic! Thank you for sharing and for brightening my day :)
mechtild at 2006-05-20 22:45 (UTC) (Link)
You are so welcome, Jane[janejane]! Your friend sounds like she has an imagination I can relate to in our shared desire to see Frodo featured in other eras, other garbs, just for the pleasure of seeing every facet of his classical beauty shown off. While some of my manips were dashed off just for laughs to illustrate humorous posts, some of them came out beautifully.
janejanejane at 2006-05-21 11:40 (UTC) (Link)
Oh yes indeed, Ismenin has placed Elijah and Dom in Ancient Egypt and historic Ireland and now Lij is an Inca God King and Dom a Spaniard... All very interesting! Have you read her fics?

I enjoy visiting art galleries and it's fascinating to see my favourite man's beautiful face manipped into some famous works of art!
mechtild at 2006-05-21 12:47 (UTC) (Link)
No, I don't mind removing the visual film-Frodo to other places and times but when it comes to the written word, I haven't read any fics that aren't set in the canon Shire (or wanted to). Perhaps one day when I have read all those, I'll get around to the AU ones, LOL. There's a lot of fic out there, though!
janejanejane at 2006-05-21 12:58 (UTC) (Link)
There sure is plenty to keep you busy, but I can certainly recommend Ismenin's fics when you've run out of Shire-based ones :)
mechtild at 2006-05-21 13:30 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you!
janejanejane at 2006-05-21 14:42 (UTC) (Link)
You are most welcome!

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