The Labors of Hercules: Hercules and the Columns of Gades

The Labors of Hercules: Hercules and the Columns of Gades

1545

Part of a set. See all set records

Hans Sebald Beham

(German, 1500-1550)

Engraving

Gift of Leonard C. Hanna, Jr. 1923.120.8

Catalogue raisonné: Pauli 101

Description

Beham was one of several German printmakers referred to today as the “Little Masters.” They established their artistic prowess by engraving remarkably small prints, appealing to collectors fascinated with miniature objects and curiosities. Here, Beham has packed 12 larger-than-life stories of the mighty Hercules into tiny prints. The series includes three of the 12 labors Hercules performed as penance for slaying his children in a fit of madness: Strangling the Nemean Lion, Killing the Lernean Hydra, and Dragging Cerberus from the Underworld. The other scenes depict tales from his life and the events preceding his death. The son of Jupiter and the mortal Alcmena, Hercules was both man and god. His saga of moral and physical trials made him one of the most popular classical heroes in Renaissance art.

See also
Collection: 
PR - Engraving
Department: 
Prints
Type of artwork: 
Print
Medium: 
Engraving

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