SLODTZ, René-Michel
(b. 1705, Paris, d. 1764, Paris)

Diana and Endymion

c. 1740
Marble, height 85 cm
Private collection

Slodtz carved around 1740 for a private collector this small group of four (counting the dog). The subject was a popular one, Diana and Endymion. The story: Endymion, sent to sleep for ever by the command of Jupiter, in return for being granted perpetual youth, was visited nightly by the goddess Diana. The beautiful youth, Endymion, who fell into an eternal sleep, has captured the imagination of poets and artists as a symbol of the timelessness of beauty that is 'a joy forever'.

The theme allowed the artist to display his talent by contrasting the amorous goddess' eagerness with the torpor of the sleeping youth.

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