The Arnolfini Mirror
Arnolfini.jpg
Closeup of the portrait's mirror and its reflection

Origin

Giovanni Arnolfini

Type

Mirror

Effects

Projects illusions of the dead

Downsides

Effects

Activation

Reflecting light

Collected by

Warehouse 10

Section

Noosphere-28N

Aisle

Discidium-895E

Shelf

11567-8223-223

Date of Collection

1622

[Source]


Origin[edit | edit source]

Giovanni Arnolfini was a 15th century Italian merchant who, while being a member of one of that time's most affluent families, has gained notoriety in the art world by being the most likely candidate as the subject for one of Early Netherlandish painter Jan van Eyck's most famous paintings, The Arnolfini Portrait.

The portrait is lauded for its incredible illusionism, as it utilizes light to both define and suggest space in the opulent room where Giovanni and his wife stand. Detailed and evocative of contemporary living in that time period, it is one of the oldest surviving oil paintings to date.

It perhaps wasn't surprising, therefore, that when it was discovered that Giovanni's wife Constanza had died a year prior to this painting's commission, the art world fell over themselves to re-identify the people in the painting.

Effects[edit | edit source]

It is unknown how the mirror gained it's abilities, as it seems to have been in the Arnolfini family for generations prior to its appearance in the background of The Arnolfini Portrait. It is suspected to be related to the medallions of Christ that circle the surface, however.

When light shines on the convex surface of the mirror, it is combined with ambient memories of the dead to create solid-light illusions of the deceased. They appear to have as much autonomy and awareness as the memories that created them, and disappear once the mirror is covered.

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