bartholomaeus spranger

SPRANGER, Bartholomaeus

Flemish painter (b. 1546, Antwerpen, d. 1611, Praha)

Venus and Adonis

c. 1587

Oil on panel, 135 x 109 cm

Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

This typical Mannerist painting depicts Adonis taking leave of Venus. The two white turtledoves on the right and the small Cupid holding an arrow on the left symbolizes their love. In the right background a satyr hands a piece of fruit to a nymph, while on the right two satyrs and two nymphs return from the hunt. Depicting idealized figures, nude or otherwise, in contrasting poses was a predilection that Spranger shared with many artists working at Rudolph’s court in Prague.