His twin hangs in the museum

Max Galuppo's girlfriend, Nikki Curtis, noticed the resemblance and posted the photo online.
Max Galuppo's girlfriend, Nikki Curtis, noticed the resemblance and posted the photo online.

TV is impressed with the look-alikes.

Posted: November 16, 2012

Temple University student Max Galuppo is the big man on canvas.

Or, at least, he appears to be.

Galuppo is getting national TV notice for bearing an uncanny resemblance to an armed aristocrat in a 16th-century Italian painting at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

ABC News found the likeness remarkable enough to contact Galuppo and his girlfriend, Nikki Curtis, after she posted a photo, now seen by thousands, on Reddit.com.

Wolf Blitzer's CNN show, The Situation Room, also set up an interview.

Thursday, it could be ABC again, with Good Morning America tentatively planning a live segment with Max and Nikki from the Arms & Armor section of the museum, according to museum spokeswoman Gigi Lamm.

That's where on Sunday the pair, celebrating two years of being together, came across Portrait of a Nobleman With Dueling Gauntlet.

The dark-haired man with a mustache, mail vest, sword, dagger, and red tights was a dead ringer for Max, Nikki said. A long-dead ringer.

He didn't see the likeness until she shot a photo with her iPhone.

"You cannot deny that picture," said Curtis, a community college student in Warren County, N.J., where they both went to Phillipsburg High School.

Could there be some supernatural explanation? Is he the Renaissance man reincarnated?

Curtis suspects a family connection. The artist and subject are unknown, but the portrait was painted in the Emilia region of Italy, in 1562.

"This is kind of like an accidental genealogy project," she said. ". . . His father's side of the family is actually from Florence, which is less than 10 miles from this Emilia."

Road trip! A European vacation has to be tempting, to see whether the town's records date back far enough.

Galuppo is a history buff, majoring in political science and religion, and "he would love to go to Italy," Curtis said. "He would love it. He's said that for a long time."

He's even talked of trying, just for fun, to put together a similar ensemble. Including red tights.

"He is definitely looking for some," she said.

She didn't know whether GMA already has the same idea, to play the twinness to the hilt - sword and all.

"I seriously, honestly hope so," Curtis said.


Contact Peter Mucha at 215-854-4342 or pmucha@phillynews.com.

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