I’m not sure why I’m so drawn to paintings with mirrors in them, but I seem to seek them out. Specifically, mirrors on walls — not mirrors as a symbol of vanity.
When I see a mirror in the background, I feel as if the artist has offered me a different perspective, allowing me to peer into a small, secret world as if through a key hole. My favorite example is William Holman Hunt’s Il Dolce Far Niente:
I’m like a child with this painting. Transfixed upon that mirror, convinced that I might see some small detail that no one else has noticed (although I know that it can’t possibly be true).