A Genio Lumen (Art and the Genius of Light)
The scene is allegorical, that is to say that it is the tangible picture of an abstract concept. The woman drawing is thus the embodiment of art – not only visual art in a narrow sense, but also of poetry and music, as can be seen from the scrolls and the lyre. The boy with the angel’s wings is a genius, i.e. a spirit: a guardian spirit of art. A. GENIO LUMEN is Latin and means something like “From the genius (comes) light”. So the boy is bringing the illumination (the owl = wisdom), power or inspiration that art requires. And that this is exactly what art – in the personage of this woman – needs emerges clearly from the despondency and fatigue that her rounded back and heavily resting head express.