Overall: 55.5 x 34.2 x 21.9 cm (21 7/8 x 13 7/16 x 8 5/8 in.)
The Severance and Greta Millikin Purchase Fund 1992.230
Soldani shows Daphne in the process of turning into a tree to escape the persistent Apollo.
Apollo, the Greek and Roman god of the sun and the arts, fell in love with the nymph Daphne. Chased to a riverbank, Daphne prayed to her father, the river god, Peneus, for help. At the moment Apollo reached out to touch her, she transformed into a laurel tree, branches and roots sprouting from her body. This work reveals key preoccupations of artists working in Italy in the 1600s: novel, active compositions; fleeting moments; and transformation from one physical form into another. Soldani based this work on a large-scale marble sculpture from 1622–25 by the Roman artist Gian Lorenzo Bernini.
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