FRANCESCO DA SANT'AGATA
(active 1491-1528 in Padua)

Hercules

1520
Boxwood, height 29 cm
Wallace Collection, London

This boxwood Hercules is the single signed work by the Paduan sculptor Francesco da Sant'Agata. He was one of several little-known goldsmiths and sculptors (Victor Camelio, Maffeo Olivieri, Desiderio da Firenze, Antonio Lombardo, Francesco da Sant'Agata and Giovanni Fonduli da Crema) who contributed to the success of the bronze statuette in North Italy in the first third of the 16th century. Their collected oeuvre represents an important and characteristic, though all too often neglected, aspect of High Renaissance art.