two men fighting; Hercules pressing his PR foot on Discord reclining in a foreshortened pose; Hercules raises a club over his head; putti flying above Hercules places a laurel wreath over his head; Hercules wears lion's skin; Discord has snakes in his hair and holds a snake in his PL hand; received framed and glazed in 17th-century frame

Hercules Triumphant over Discord, 1633-1634

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Christoffel Jegher was the most accomplished woodblock cutter in the Netherlands in the 17th century. When Peter Paul Rubens decided to experiment with woodcuts in the 1630s, he, not surprisingly, chose to work with Jegher. Their collaboration led to the creation of nine spectacular woodcut prints–masterpieces that mark one of the highpoints of the woodcut medium. Monumental in scale and design, and majestic and masterful in execution, Hercules Triumphant over Discord exemplifies their collaborative achievement. In an unusual vertical format, the powerful figure of Hercules is shown violently clubbing the vanquished, writhing Hydra, who represents Discord or Envy. Jegher brilliantly exploits the bold, inky quality of the woodcut line to deepen the dynamic tension of the scene, describing the figure of Hercules with extraordinary force—his astounding musculature, taut flesh, veiny arms and ankles, knotty wooden club, and wild expression.

Details
Title
Hercules Triumphant over Discord
Artist Life
1577–1640
Role
Artist
Accession Number
2011.38.1
Provenance
(Paul Prouté, Paris). Samuel Josefowitz, Pully, Switzerland (until 2004). (Robert M. Light, Santa Barbara). private collection, New York, until 2011; (sold through C.G. Boerner, New York)
Catalogue Raisonne
Hollstein 15.I, Schneevoogt 127.68, Rowlands 181
Curator Approved

This record has been reviewed by our curatorial staff but may be incomplete. These records are frequently revised and enhanced. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email collectionsdata@artsmia.org.

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two men fighting; Hercules pressing his PR foot on Discord reclining in a foreshortened pose; Hercules raises a club over his head; putti flying above Hercules places a laurel wreath over his head; Hercules wears lion's skin; Discord has snakes in his hair and holds a snake in his PL hand; received framed and glazed in 17th-century frame