after Andrea Mantegna / Bacchanal with a Wine Vat / ca. 1490after Andrea Mantegna
Bacchanal with a Wine Vat
ca. 1490

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Creator Name: Mantegna, Andrea
Creator Nationality: European; Southern European; Italian
Creator Role: Artist
Creator Dates/Places: Italian, b. Isola di Carturo 1431- d. Mantua 1506
Creator Name-CRT: after Andrea Mantegna
Title: Bacchanal with a Wine Vat
View: Full View
Creation Start Date: 1480
Creation End Date: 1500
Creation Date: ca. 1490
Object Type: Prints
Materials and Techniques: engraving
Dimensions: 11-3/4 x 17-1/4 in. (29.8 x 43.8 cm)
AMICA Contributor: The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Owner Location: New York, New York, USA
ID Number: 1986.1159
Credit Line: Purchase, Rogers Fund, The Charles Engelhard Foundation Gift, and The Elisha Whittelsey Collection, The Elisha Whittelsey Fund, 1986

Throughout his life Mantegna was fascinated with classical antiquity. Giorgio Vasari, in the middle of the sixteenth century, was but the first of many to note how Mantegna's work in two dimensions aspired to the quality of sculpture, writing that 'Andrea was ever of the opinion that the good ancient statues were more perfect and had greater beauty in their various parts than is shown by nature.' From 1488 to 1490 Mantegna spent a year and a half in Rome, where he could revel in both the monumental architecture, standing since antiquity, and the statuary and reliefs that were being dug up and collected with Renaissance fervor by antiquarians. Much of his work after he returned to Mantua in the 1490s referred to this imagery. This composition and the companion 'Bacchanal with Silenus' were inspired by antique sarcophagi that were in the collections of the della Valle family and at Santa Maria Maggiore in Rome. These prints, as well as his paintings of the 1490s that hark back to works seen in Rome, are prime examples of the way Mantegna's imagination could endlessly reformulate antique sources into entirely original designs. It has been conjectured that these compositions of classical subjects were originally destined to decorate one of the Gonzaga country palaces; alternatively, the suggestion has also been made that they were meant to exist only as prints.

AMICA ID: MMA_.1986.1159
AMICA Library Year: 2000
Media Metadata Rights: Copyright The Metropolitan Museum of Art

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