Raphael Sadeler I Netherlandish
After Maerten de Vos Netherlandish

Not on view

Love, labor, honor, and pain: these are the four stages of human life according to many early modern artists, including Sadeler. In this image of labor, Minerva, goddess of crafts, commerce, and the arts (as well as wisdom), appears above a muscular young man who seems to have been interrupted in the act of measurement. He gazes at a building under construction, with a compass in his left hand, a large architectural treatise in his right, and various instruments of the liberal arts at his feet. In the distance are industrious scenes of men and women engaged in harvesting and weaving. Labor is understood here to encompass not only the virtues of physical activity but also the diligence required to produce works of art, mathematics, and science.

Labor, Raphael Sadeler I (Netherlandish, Antwerp 1560–1628 Venice (?)), Engraving and etching

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