Noah and the Animals Entering the Ark

Noah and the Animals Entering the Ark

1650-1655

Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione

(Italian, 1609-1664)

Etching

Gift of The Print Club of Cleveland in honor of the Club's seventy-fifth anniversary 1993.222

Catalogue raisonné: Bellini 61 ; Percy G24

Location

Description

Animals were among Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione’s favorite subjects, leading him to frequently depict the biblical story of Noah’s Ark. Here, a group of men guide horses, deer, dogs, goats, and even guinea pigs toward the ark. After viewing etchings by his contemporary Rembrandt, whose work was not yet known widely in Italy, Castiglione recognized the potential of the medium. He emulated the Dutch master’s sketchy, draftsman-like approach and created a recession into space by combining deeply and lightly etched lines. The lush landscape, with its complicated layers of vegetation that swirl with movement, is a distinctive feature of Castiglione’s technique.

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