TIZIANO Vecellio
(b. 1490, Pieve di Cadore, d. 1576, Venezia)

Danaë with a Nurse

Oil on canvas, 129 x 180 cm
Museo del Prado, Madrid

Between 1553 and 1554 Titian executed for the Habsburgs two "mythological fables" of clearly erotic intent, the Danaë and the Venus and Adonis, both now in the Prado, Madrid.

The Danaë is really a variation on a canvas painted ten years earlier for the Farnese family. With greater fidelity to Ovid's text, the Cupid has now been replaced by the elderly nurse who attempts to use her apron to gather the shower of gold into which Jupiter had transformed himself in order to possess the young woman.

Danaë is frequently represented in Renaissance and Baroque painting. You can view other depictions of Danaë in the Web Gallery of Art.

Suggested listening (streaming mp3, 5 minutes):
Richard Strauss: Danaë's Love, Danaë's monologue