Copy after Giulio Romano's Fall of Icarus

Copy after Giulio Romano's Fall of Icarus

after 1536

after Giulio Romano

(Italian, 1492/99-1546)

Pen and brown ink and brush and brown wash over red chalk, heightened with lead white

Support: Light brown laid paper, laid down on beige(1) wove paper

Sheet: 39.8 x 29.3 cm (15 11/16 x 11 9/16 in.); Secondary Support: 41.9 x 31.6 cm (16 1/2 x 12 7/16 in.)

Seventy-fifth anniversary gift of Robert A. Frary in memory of I. T. Frary 1992.90

Description

Having flown too close to the sun, Icarus plummets from the sky as the wax securing his makeshift wings melts, and the straps unravel. His father Daedelus, who invented the wings, watches in horror as his son begins a deadly fall. Punished for failing to heed his father’s warning and attempting to enter the realm of the gods, Icarus was a moral reminder to Renaissance viewers of human fallibility and the risks of excessive pride.

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