Pinacoteca di Brera Informazioni

Venus and Cupid with Two Satyrs in a Landscape

Simone Peterzano

Peterzano, who trained in Titian’s workshop and worked in Milan from 1582, was Caravaggio’s master. In this rare secular painting glowing with intense, saturated colour, we can see certain features that must have struck Peterzano’s young pupil – first and foremost, his accurate naturalistic portrayal of the deep landscape and of the individual blades of grass in the meadow, but also the sophisticated antiquarian culture revealed by the goddess’s pose echoing a celebrated Classical sculpture depicting the Sleeping Ariadne.

Frame with Elongated volutes, masks and floral motifs


Open carving with gouache gilding in pure gold; coloured purple.

Frames are often more expensive than their paintings, but have only become the object of study recently. They document the culture of the period to which they belong and illustrate an important aspect of the history of collecting. This spectacular example recalls the Baroque frames of Palazzo Pitti and the Lombard ones of the Borromeo collection on the Isola Bella.



Labels by famous authors

“The landscape folds like cloth. The mountains cradle the light as the blue cloack holds Venu’s body. Light curves two ways, over the mountains and under the woman, placing us within. The brutishly cheerful satyr and the beady-eyed goat are showing us a secret. The silk trails between her legs, teasing-will we see her revealed as the sleeps? They have crept up on her, this jewel in the leafscape, but they don’t know what they see. Her skin dazzles. We see a goddess. They see a stolen picnic.  ”
Lisa Hilton

Download hi-res image TITLE Venus and Cupid with Two Satyrs in a Landscape
AUTHOR Simone Peterzano
DATE 1570 - 3
DIMENSIONS cm 135.2 x 206.9
Work on display
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