(b. ca. 1460, Mantova, d. 1528, Mantova)

Venus Felix

c. 1495
Bronze, partly gilded, height with base 32 cm
Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna

Antico drew on the antique, showing it meticulous respect. Attached to the humanist court of the Gonzagas at Mantua, dominated by the personality of Mantegna and an archeological interest in decoration, he went to Rome to study the great marbles. The Apollo Belvedere inspired him to make an extremely faithful reduction of it, whereas the somewhat stiff and heavy Belvedere Venus Felix gave him an opportunity to correct the antique, transforming the drapery, softening the attitude and suppressing the genius which accompanied her.

The limewood base is inset with Roman coins.