Three Graces; Bazzanti (c. 1840)
The display reads:
Italian, 1823 - 1843
Three Graces, c. 1840
Gift of Mr. & Mrs. John W. Starr in memory and affection for L.E. & Lenore Phillips
The Three Graces is perhaps the best known sculpture of the neoclassical period. Antonio Canova (1757 - 1822) worked for Napoleon and Josephine, and it was Josephine who commissioned a statue of the Three Graces from Canova in 1812. The sixth Duke of Bedford saw the work in Canova's studio and, as Josephine had died, wanted to purchase it for his colllection. Ultimately, however, Bedford received a second version, which was delivered and installed in 1817 in his sculpture gallery.
The Three Graces were daughters of Zeus. Euphrosyne represents mirth. Thalia, youth and beauty, and Aglaia, elegance. The three lived on Mount Parnassus as appropriate companions to the Muses. The fame of Canova's masterpiece inspired many replicas; Philbrook's reduced version was executed by Pierre Bazzanti in Florence. Bazzanti may have produced this example for an English patron, as he received many British commissions.
Taken November 26th, 2011.