Publication details

Ovid’s Metamorphoses in 17th- and 18th-Century Bohemia and Moravia



Year of publication 2024
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source Il capitale culturale. Studies on the Value of Cultural Heritage
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Arts

Keywords Ancient mythology; Iconography; Baroque Painting; Ovid; Metamorphoses
Description The paper presents results of the first comprehensive analysis of the reception of Ovid’s Metamorphoses in Baroque art in Bohemia and Moravia. First aspects of the reception relate to the referentiality that is one of the essential characteristics of Baroque art in Central Europe, where various influences from both neighbouring and more distant regions intersect. Artists mainly used popular illustrated editions of the Metamorphoses: cycles by V. Solis, H. Goltzius, C. de Passe, A. Tempesta, J. W. Baur, and engravings from the 1676 Paris edition or the 1677 Brussels edition. Nevertheless, the receptive character of these works of art cannot be understood as a result of lack of artistic invention but it is quite often strongly rooted in the patrons’ requirements, as some preserved archive sources confirm. The article also tries to trace the popularity of editions among artists and patrons through the research of inheritance inventories of patrons and painters. The importance of Ovid’s works is also demonstrated on one of the most striking examples, the only existing early modern translation of full text of Metamorphoses to Czech language.

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