'The Office's' John Krasinski, also a time traveler?
Update: I've just heard back from the assistant curator from the Statens Museum for Kunst and apparently I misidentified the Carl Adolf Feilberg depicted in the painting. He is not, as it turns out, the Danish-born Australian journalist but a soap and candle maker.
"Carl Adolf Feilberg was also born in 1810 and was Købke's brother-in-law," writes assistant curator Line Marie Thorsen. "Feilberg established Falkonergaardens Fabrikker (The Factories of Falkonergaarden) in 1842, where soap and candles were produced and as far as we know, he died in 1896."
So there you have it. Still beats beet farming.
-- Friday, Oct. 29, 9:44 a.m. ET
Speaking of time travelers, here's another report from the flux capacitor department.
When Ann Arbor, Mich., student Johanna Franzen and her boyfriend sought shelter from the rain in a Copenhagen museum, they hardly expected to be confronted by a painting of what appeared to be "The Office's" Jim Halpert (a.k.a. John Krasinski). Especially since the painting was produced by artist Christen Kobke in 1835.
"We were in a room that had a bunch of paintings (other portraits, cows ... apparently cows are a common theme in Danish painting)," wrote Franzen in an e-mail this morning, "and my boyfriend noticed this painting in particular. He called me over and asked me if I was thinking the same thing he was -- and I asked, 'Jim from The Office'?"
John Krasinski's reaction, after the jump...
"The resemblance was so uncanny," wrote Franzen, "that we were joking about how it made us think it was some publicity stunt (like when Stephen Colbert had his portrait put in the Smithsonian)."
Franzen then took a photo (which was allowed by the museum -- the Statens Museum for Kunst, in case you want to visit), posted it to her Facebook page and Reddit and the rest is, well, history. The photo went viral and sparked a lively debate about whether it was real or had been PhotoShopped.
Turns out it's real enough. Here it is in the museum's official online database.
The painting depicts Carl Adolf Feilberg who, according to Wikipedia, was a Danish-born Australian journalist and human rights activist with a ridiculously colorful past. Here's a quote from Feilberg on the treatment of Australia's aboriginal population:
This, in plain language, is how we deal with the aborigines: On occupying new territory the aboriginal inhabitants are treated exactly in the same way as the wild beasts or birds the settlers may find there. Their lives and their property, the nets, canoes, and weapons which represent as much labour to them as the stock and buildings of the white settler, are held by the Europeans as being at their absolute disposal.
We think Jim Halpert would be proud.
We managed to contact Krasinski via his publicist to get his reaction: "Wow! Seems a little highbrow for NBC marketing. ... But I like it!"
In any case, we hope "The Office" writers can figure out a way to work the painting into a future episode. Time travel? Dwight would be so jealous.
| October 28, 2010; 1:25 PM ET
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