Granted immortality by Jupiter, Hercules is carried up to Olympus in a chariot drawn by centaurs. The subjugation of the half-breed creatures in this image may allude to Hercules's successful battle with them, often counted among his labors. A reference to the centaur Nessus, who was responsible for Hercules's death, could also be intended. Beneath the chariot, a cupid holds up the snake that Hercules had strangled in his cradle, while another rides Cerberus, the three-headed hellhound whose capture had been the hero's final labor.
The painting reproduced in this print, now lost, was the only one of a series of four commissioned by the court in Saint Petersburg that was painted by Domenico. The other three were painted by his father, Giambattista, and etched by his brother Lorenzo.
Inscription: Lettered in plate along lower margin: Joannes Dominicus Tiepolo / invenit pinxit, et delineavit, inc.
Numbered at top left: 40
Vendor: Frederick Keppel & Co.
De Vesme 1906, 425.101 iii
Alexandre de Vesme Le peintre-graveur Italien. Milan, 1906, cat. no. 101, p. 425–6.
Artist: Giovanni Domenico Tiepolo (Italian, Venice 1727–1804 Venice)Date: 1727–1804Medium: Pen and brown ink, brush and brown wash, over traces of graphite or leadAccession: 37.165.57On view in:Not on view
Artist: Giovanni Domenico Tiepolo (Italian, Venice 1727–1804 Venice)Date: 1727–1804Medium: Pen and brown ink, brush and brown wash, over black chalk. Framing lines in pen and brown inkAccession: 37.165.63On view in:Not on view