Entry by Daysi Perez Mendez: Unused Tailpiece Design for "The Duchess of Malfi"

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Unused Tailpiece Design for "The Duchess of Malfi"

Full description

In Henry Weston Keen’s drawing, viewers can immediately depict many symbols. For starters, the focal point, the key point of interest in the painting that viewers tend to notice, is the snake. The snake is a symbol of poison, danger and blood. In the play, "The Duchess of Malfi" Bosola can be a representation of a snake. Throughout the play, we see that Bosola turns his back on many people. Not only is he unfaithful, but he is also dangerous. As the play goes on, we are told that he drags many bodies and as the play concludes, not only does he kill people, but he also kills himself. A snake also symbolizes blood which is represented through the many violent acts of death throughout the play. The title of the artwork, Unused Tailpiece Design for "The Duchess of Malfi” is interesting due to the term “tailpiece” as it is a piece added at the end of a writing. The fact that it is “unused” is interesting as at the ending of the play, as mentioned previously, death was involved which is represented through various symbols in the art piece. There is a strong connection between the ending of the play and the artwork Unused Tailpiece Design for "The Duchess of Malfi."

Author: Daysi Perez Mendez

  • type
  • created on
  • file format
  • file size
    1012 KB
  • creator
    Henry Weston Keen
  • credit
  • rights
    Restricted Access
  • rights holder
    The Metropolitan Museum of Art