LEONI, Leone
(b. 1509, Menaggio, d. 1590, Milano)

Ferrante Gonzaga Triumphant over Evil and Envy

Piazza Roma, Guastalla

In 1560 Leone also received a commission to erect a bronze monument to Ferrante Gonzaga (d. 1557), the late governor of Milan in the Piazza Roma, Guastalla. Ferrante Gonzaga Triumphant over Evil and Envy was the artist's second two-figured group and shows Gonzaga standing over a hydra and prostrate satyr, who falls backwards off the base. Although Leone had seen Cellini's Perseus and Medusa in the Loggia dei Lanzi in Florence on his return to Milan from Rome in 1560, his group has none of the mannered elegance of Cellini's work. Leone's satyr is, in fact, a colossal version of one of Andrea Riccio's small bronzes, while the armed portrait of Gonzaga continues the classicised realism seen in his earlier busts and statues.

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