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Thursday, 15 April 2021

Workshop of Hendrik Goltzius’ engraving, “Arcas aims his arrow at Callisto”, 1590

Workshop of Hendrik Goltzius (aka Hendrick Goltzius) (1558–1617) and executed under Goltzius’ direction. (Note that amongst the students in Golzius’ workshop were the highly distinguished artists: Jacob Matham, Jan Saenredam, Jan Muller, Jacob de Gheyn II and Pieter de Jode.)

Arcas aims his arrow at Callisto” (Rijksmuseum title) (aka “Arcas Preparing to Kill his Mother, Changed into a Bear” [TIB title]), 1590, plate 29 from the series of fifty-two prints (of an originally planned 300), “Metamorphoses from Ovid”, initially published in Haarlem in 1589 by Hendrik Goltzius/Claes Jansz. Visscher (1587–1652) and later by Hendrik Bosch (Bos) (fl. 1717–1729) in Amsterdam in “Metamorphoses Book II”, lettered with Latin verses by Franco Estius (fl.1580s–1594).

Engraving on fine laid paper.

Size: (sheet) 22.6 x 31 cm; (plate) 17.6 x 25.6 cm; (image borderline) 16.5 x 25.3 cm.

Numbered on plate below the image borderline in the lower corners: (left) “9”; (right) “29”.

Lettered on plate below the image borderline with four lines of Latin in two columns: “Diclynne dilecta comes .../ ...// …/ …in axe lacat.”

State ii (of ii) with the addition of the plate number.

TIB 3 (3). 59 (107) (Walter L Strauss [ed.] 1980, “The Illustrated Bartsch: Netherlandish Artists: Hendrik Goltzius”, vol. 3, p. 327, cat. no. 59 (107); New Hollstein Dutch 560-2(2).

The British Museum offers the following description of this print:

“Plate 29: Landscape with Callisto as a bear on a river-bank at right, her son Arcas standing at left and pointing an arrow at her in order to kill her; after Hendrik Goltzius” (https://www.britishmuseum.org/collection/object/P_1947-0412-3-29).

See also the description of this print offered by the Rijksmuseum:

(Transl.) “Arcas, the son of Jupiter and Callisto, aims his arrow at a bear, unaware that it is his mother. She changed shape fifteen years earlier. In the background to the right you can see how Jupiter places mother and son in the sky before Arcas can shoot, as constellations. Two lines of verse in Latin under the depiction" (http://hdl.handle.net/10934/RM0001.COLLECT.594124).

Condition: a well-printed slightly silvery impression with generous margins (approx. 2.5 cm). The sheet is in an excellent condition with no tears, holes, abrasions, folds (but there are minor restored printer’s creases), losses, significant stains or foxing.

I am selling this very beautiful engraving in a remarkably good condition considering its considerable age from Goltzius’ workshop, for the total cost of AU$340 (currently US$263.39/EUR219.88/GBP191.07 at the time of this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world (but not, of course, any import duties/taxes imposed by some countries).

If you are interested in purchasing this 16th century interpretation of the mythological story where Callisto—a nymph turned into a bear by the wife of Zeus after discovering Zeus had made the nymph pregnant—is about to be shot by her fully grown-up son, Arcas, but escapes being killed by rising into the heavens to become the constellation Ursa Major (“the Great Bear"), please contact me (oz_jim@printsandprinciples.com) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

This print has been sold 











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