Study for the origin of Coral, Claude Lorrain

    SKU: brimus291

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    About

    This beautiful pen and ink drawing is a study by the French artist Claude Lorrain for his 1674 painting 'Coast view with Perseus and the origin of Coral' commissioned by Cardinal Camillio Massimi. This study shows several versions of how Lorrain might have depicted the story of the origin of coral, as told in Ovid's 'Metamorphoses' (Book IV, 670-803). The story goes that after slaying the Gorgon, Medusa, the Greek hero Perseus flew off on the winged horse Pegasus with Medusa's head. He then rescued the maiden Andromeda from a sea monster, and placed the Gorgon's head on the ground as he washed his hands. As the sea nymphs watched, the blood from Medusa's severed head turned the surrounding seaweed into pink stone, thus coral was created. This drawing focuses mainly on the poses and setting of the sea nymphs, who are shown either lifting the Gorgon's head in interest, or reclining around the screaming head on the ground. Pen and brown ink, with brown wash, over traces of black chalk, framing lines in pen and brown ink, 1672.

    Specification

    Artist: Claude Lorrain (1600-1682)

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