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Orazio Gentileschi, c, c. 1623, oil on canvas, 63 ½ by 89 ¼ in (161.3 by 226.7 cm.)

Danaë is a circa 1623 oil on canvas painting by the Italian artist Orazio Gentileschi. It is an example of an Italian Baroque painting and is now in the collection of the J. Paul Getty Museum.

The painting was commissioned in 1621 by Giovanni Antonio Sauli who had invited Gentileschi to Genoa. Gentileschi painted a number of works for Sauli besides the Danäe, including a Penitent Magdalen and a Lot and his Daughters. The painting draws together the Caravaggesque naturalism that influenced Gentileschi's earlier work with the Tuscan lyricism he later developed.[1][2]

Artemisia Gentileschi - Danaë

The subject of the painting is the ancient Greek myth of Danaë, which tells of how Zeus, king of the gods, visited Danaë in a shower of gold, from which union Perseus was born. The myth is regarded as a forerunner of the Christian belief in the Annunciation, the divine conception of Christ.[2]

Orazio's daughter Artemisia Gentileschi portrayed Danaë earlier.[3]

The painting was auctioned at Sotheby's New York on 28 January 2016. It was the most important Baroque painting to be offered for sale in decades, and purchased for US $30,500,000 by the Getty. It is to be hung alongside Gentileschi's Lot and his Daughters.[1][4][5]

ProvenanceEdit

  • Commissioned in 1621 by Giovanni Antonio Sauli, Genoa;
  • By descent and inheritance in the family;
  • Thomas P. Grange, London, by 1975;
  • By whom sold in 1977 to Richard L. Feigen;
  • By whom sold on 2 October 1998 to a family trust, the present consignor.[1]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c "Danaë:Orazio Gentileschi". Sotheby's.
  2. ^ a b "Orazio Gentileschi in Genoa: Paintings for the Palazzo Sauli". J. Paul Getty Museum.
  3. ^ "Danaë: Artemisia Gentileschi". Saint Louis Art Museum.[permanent dead link]
  4. ^ "Sotheby's to Sell a $35 Million Old Master Painting Once Embroiled in a Legendary Legal Fight". Artnet.
  5. ^ Grosvenor, Bendor. "Getty buys $30.5m Gentileschi". arthistorynews, January 29, 2016