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Lion Attacking a Horse
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Lion Attacking a Horse

Description Conservation Exhibitions Provenance Credit
Description A damaged but expressive Hellenistic marble sculpture of a "Lion Attacking a Horse" in Rome (now in the garden of the Palazzo dei Conservatori) offered a challenge to artists to figure out how it originally looked. The group was restored in 1594. Giambologna, the sculptor of Flemish origins who dominated Florentine sculpture in the late 1500s, explored the subject in models for small bronzes around 1580-1589, which proved popular and continued to be cast long after his death. Individual examples exhibit variations. At least two casts were in Flemish collections, and this one is related to a version owned by the Emperor Rudolf II (now in Vienna). However, here the horse's forelock is lengthened and twisted into a small, spiral horn, evoking the unicorn of medieval legend and therefore appealing to a collector.
Date Description Narrative
Loan Considerationexamined for loan
11/18/1958Treatmentcleaned; coated
12/01/1987Treatmentcleaned; coated
12/17/1987Examinationexamined for condition
1/01/2002Examinationexamined for condition
7/31/2002Technical Reportother
  • The Mannerists. Fort Wayne Art Museum, Indiana, Fort Wayne; Allen Memorial Art Museum, Oberlin. 1963-1965.
  • World of Wonder. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1971-1972.
  • Joseph Ternbach: Conservator, Collector. Queens Museum of Art, Flushing. 1984-1985.
  • A Renaissance Puzzle: Heemskerck's Abduction of Helen. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1993.
  • The Allure of Bronze. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1995.
  • Highlights from the Collection. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1998-2001.
  • Déjà Vu? The Repeating Image in Renaissance and Baroque Art. The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore. 2007-2008.
Provenance Don Marcello Massarenti Collection, Rome [1900 suppl. cat. no. 98] [date and mode of acquisition unknown]; Henry Walters, Baltimore, 1902, by purchase; Walters Art Museum, 1931, by bequest.
Credit Acquired by Henry Walters with the Massarenti Collection, 1902

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model: 1580-1589; cast: early 18th century
Accession Number
H: 9 3/8 in. (23.8 cm)


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