Fall of the giants, Palazzo del Principe, Genoa


Fall of the giants, Palazzo del Principe, Genoa
(c. 1529)
   Perino del Vaga painted this ceiling fresco as part of the decorations of Andrea Doria's Palazzo del Principe. The scene, located in the Sala dei Giganti (Room of the Giants), depicts the Olympian defeat of the giants, sons of the earth goddess Gaia. Saturn, one of the giants, had devoured each one of his children because his father Uranus had prophesied that one of them would defeat him. His consort, Rhea, hid their son Jupiter from him and, once fully grown, Jupiter forced Saturn to disgorge his siblings (Juno, Neptune, Pluto, and Ceres). Together, they overthrew Saturn; Jupiter, Neptune, and Pluto then divided the universe among themselves. Jupiter became the god of the heavens, Neptune of the oceans, and Pluto of the underworld. The giants rose up against them. To reach Mount Olympus where the gods presided, they stacked Mount Pelion atop Mount Ossa, but were miserably defeated by the gods and cast to the underworld. In the fresco, Jupiter is shown with thunderbolt in hand and the zodiac belt around him, a reference to his having brought order to the universe and established the seasons. Below, the defeated giants lay on the ground in contorted poses. The fresco reveals the influence of Raphael with whom Perino worked while in Rome, particularly in the arrangement of the upper portion of the scene, which closely resembles the composition in Raphael's Psyche Received at Mount Olympus in the Villa Farnesina (1517-1518). Doria's ally, Charles V, used the Sala dei Giganti as his temporary throne room. The fresco by Perino served as allegory of the emperor's victories against the Protestants.

Historical dictionary of Renaissance art. . 2008.

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  • Vaga, Perino del — (c. 1500 1547)    Perino del Vaga was among those responsible for establishing the Mannerist style in Rome where he worked for a while as one of Raphael s assistants. He was originally from Florence, where he studied with Andrea de Ceri and later …   Dictionary of Renaissance art

  • Perino del Vaga — or Perin del Vaga, nickname of Piero Buonaccorsi (1501 – October 14, 1547), was an Italian painter of the Late Renaissance/Mannerism.BiographyHe was born near Florence. His father ruined himself by gambling, and became a soldier in the invading… …   Wikipedia

  • Jupiter —    The god of gods, Jupiter is the ruler of heaven and Earth. In his infancy, he was hidden so his father Saturn would not devour him and was nurtured by the goat Amalthea, a scene sculpted by Gian Lorenzo Bernini in 1615 (Rome, Galleria… …   Dictionary of Renaissance art

  • Floris, Frans — (1516 1570)    Flemish Mannerist painter from Antwerp who established his workshop in 1540 after his return from a trip to Rome. One of his most important patrons was William the Silent of Orange; one of his most notable works is the Fall of the… …   Dictionary of Renaissance art

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