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La caccia di Diana

Zampieri Domenico called Domenichino
(Bologna 1581 - Naples 1641)

Domenichino executed this painting for Cardinal Pietro Aldobrandini, but was forced to give it to Scipione Borghese, who – in order to obtain it and thus take it away from his rival – had the artist imprisoned, if only for a short time.
The subject is the tale of Diana, portrayed here in the mythical landscape of Arcadia. Standing on an elevation, the goddess of chastity dominates the composition. Still absorbed in their competitions – archery, running, and wrestling – her nymphs are about to receive their prizes. However, we note the presence of two men, hidden in the bushes on the right, who – even though they are gesturing to the viewer for silence – have already been spotted by the dogs, which will shortly tear them to pieces. No man was allowed to see Diana and her nymphs naked.

Object Details

Medium | oil on canvas, cm 225x320

Inventory | 53

Location | Room 19 – Helen and Paris Room

Period | '600

Classification | painting

  • Provenance
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Collection of Cardinal Scipione Borghese (1617)