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Helen Lundeberg
Double Portrait of the Artist in Time
1935
oil
47 3/4 x 40 in.
Smithsonian American Art Museum



Lundeberg presents herself simultaneously as a child and an adult. The clock shows the time as quarter past two, indicating the age of the child, who is linked to the adult Lundeberg by a shadow. In a curious reversal, Lundeberg presents the child as real, while the adult is represented by a painted image, suggesting, perhaps, the artificial nature of the adult living in a larger world. The child holds the white lily of purity; the woman toys with a red rose.