DROST, Willem
(b. 1633, Amsterdam, d. 1659, Venezia)

The Sibyl

c. 1654
Oil on canvas, 98 x 78 cm
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

This picture was painted by the young artist when he was still in Amsterdam and very much under the influence of Rembrandt. Presumably, the title The Sibyl was chosen on analogy with the similarly posed and comparably dressed figure in Domenichino's celebrated Cumaean Sibyl of about 1616-17. One of the many painted copies of that picture was probably seen by Drost in the Netherlands. Drost appears to have chosen the subject as in his erotic Bathsheba) as a mere pretext for the image of an erotic creature.

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