Nov 9, 2006

The Deities: Demogorgon in the Cave of Eternity

The Deities: Demogorgon in the Cave of Eternity


Hendrick Goltzius

(Dutch, 1558–1617)

Chiaroscuro woodcut

Overall: 34.9 x 26.2 cm (13 3/4 x 10 5/16 in.)

Gift of The Print Club of Cleveland 1952.204

Catalogue raisonné: Hollstein 374 (VIII)



Not all witches were women; men also performed magic. Unlike the destructive and sexualized stereotypes of female witches, male magicians were likened to the philosophers, alchemists, or heroic scientists of the Renaissance. In Goltzius's print, which was so popular it was reprinted as late as the 19th century, the central male figure is Demogorgon, the omnipotent father of all gods. Although Demogorgon was feared as the "Demon-gorgon," a terror who could unleash his primordial power, Goltzius portrays the god as a wizened and magical force who uses his power to give form to the world.

See also
PR - Chiaroscuro
Type of artwork: 

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