Subject Details
A meta-image is a composition featuring a displayed image. A meta-image thus combines two entities: the first is the larger composition, be it a narrative scene or a portrait; and the second is one or more smaller displayed images within the larger composition. This can take the form of a painted panel, a sculpture, a wall painting, or a stained glass window, among others. Two medieval examples of meta-images are the icon with the Triumph of Orthodoxy (ca. 1400) and the Stefaneschi altarpiece (ca. 1320).
  • Ševčenko, Nancy Patterson, “Icons in the Liturgy,” Dumbarton Oaks Papers 45 (1991): 45–57.

  • Weyl Carr, Annemarie, “Images: Expressions of Faith and Power,” in Byzantium: Faith and Power (1261–1557), ed. Helen C. Evans (New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2004), 143–52.

  • Chastel, André, Le Tableau dans le Tableau (Paris: Flammarion, 2012).

  • Stoichita, Victor I., The Self-Aware Image: An Insight Into Early Modern Meta-painting, trans. Anne-Marie Glasheen (London and Turnhout: Harvey Miller, 2015).

  • Giulia Puma, “L’image dans l’image – Antiquité et Moyen age. Introduction générale,” Images Re-vues, Hors-série 9 (2020),

See Froms
  • image-within-image
  • image-object
  • reflexive image
Subject Classifications
Associated Works of Art