Statue of Minerva, 1748

Not on Viewexpand_more

Piranesi’s views of Rome seem to document the city, but they distort reality for expressive purposes. This opening image for the series makes clear that for Piranesi, Rome’s ruins were fuel for dreams and fantasies. Here Minerva, Roman goddess of wisdom and the arts, presides amid tumbledown splendor. At the upper left, Hercules, symbol of strength, has turned away from this place. With Piranesi’s help, we can recreate in our minds the lost grandeur of this mighty imperial capital. Our hearts might beat faster before this imagined glory, yet we may also mourn its passing as we follow Piranesi’s ramble through the wreckage.

Details
Title
Statue of Minerva
Artist Life
Italian, 1720–1778
Role
Artist
Accession Number
P.17,304
Catalogue Raisonne
Hind 002
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.

Does something look wrong with this image? Let us know

In consideration of the health and safety of visitors, volunteers, and staff, Mia is temporarily closed to the public. Learn more here.