Apollo, Pan, and a putto blowing a horn, from a series of eight compositions after Francesco Primaticcio's designs for the ceiling of the Ulysses Gallery (destroyed 1738-39) at Fontainebleau

Series/Portfolio: Eight compositions after Francesco Primaticcio's designs for the ceiling of the Gallery of Ulysses (destroyed 1738-39) at Fontainebleau

Artist: Giorgio Ghisi (Italian, Mantua ca. 1520–1582 Mantua)

Artist: After Francesco Primaticcio (Italian, Bologna 1504/5–1570 Paris)

Date: 1560s

Medium: Engraving

Dimensions: sheet: 11 3/4 x 6 1/2 in. (29.8 x 16.5 cm)

Classification: Prints

Credit Line: The Elisha Whittelsey Collection, The Elisha Whittelsey Fund, 1949

Accession Number: 49.95.161

Description

This engraving depicting the contest between Pan and Apollo is based on one of four frescoes—the other three represent groups of Muses—that surrounded a central depiction of Venus and the Fates on the vault of the Galerie d'Ulisse at Fontainebleau. Given the planetary symbolism of the ceiling, known today only through descriptions, prints, and drawings, it seems likely that the music making here is associated with the harmonies of the cosmos.

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