Watch and Listen

Venus and Minerva

Sculpted in a finely polished and chiselled boxwood, these two female statuettes, with their complex poses and fluid folds of fabric, evoke the culture and tastes of Renaissance art lovers.

Venus and Minerva
Circa 1550
56,5 x 23 x 15 et 56 x 20 x 18 cm
FGA-AD-BA-0065 and 0066

Narrated by Dr. Fabienne Fravalo, Curator of the decorative arts collection

Amongst the mythological themes that became popular again during the Renaissance, the Judgement of Paris holds a central place.

This famous beauty contest, one of the events that led to the Trojan War, opposed Juno—today missing from the sculpted group—; Venus, standing here on a scallop shell and accompanied by a small Cupid, and Minerva, equipped with her warrior attributes (armour and shield).

Particularly sought after by collectors for their art cabinets, this subject offered the ideal opportunity to showcase the human body, as here in a Mannerist vein, with an emphasis on the torsion of the figures and the elongated bodies of the goddesses.