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The Birth of Venus

The Birth of Venus (Drawing & Painting)

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Artist / Photographer: visionFez

The Birth of Venus is a painting by Sandro Botticelli. It depicts the goddess Venus, having emerged from the sea as a full grown woman, arriving at the sea-shore (Venus Anadyomene motif). The painting is currently in the Uffizi Gallery in Florence.

Other names:
Bosanski: Rođenje Venere.
Česky: Zrození Venuše.
Dansk: Venus' fødsel.
Norsk: Venus’ Fødsel.
Deutsch: Geburt der Venus.
English: The Birth of Venus.
Español: El nacimiento de Venus.
Eesti: Veenuse sünd.
Français : La Naissance de Vénus.
Italiano: La nascita di Venere.
日本語: ヴィーナスの誕生
한국어: 비너스의 탄생
Polski: Narodziny Wenus.
Slovenčina: Zrodenie Venuše.
Svenska: Venus födelse.
Română: Naşterea lui Venus
Русский: Рождение Венеры.
中文: 维纳斯的诞生

This large picture may have been, like the Primavera, painted for Lorenzo di Pierfrancesco de' Medici's Villa di Castello, around 1482, or even before. Some scholars suggest that the Venus painted for Lorenzo and mentioned by Giorgio Vasari may have been a different work, now lost. Some art historians believe it to be a celebration of the love of Giuliano di Piero de' Medici (who died in the Pazzi conspiracy in 1478) for Simonetta Cattaneo Vespucci, who lived in Portovenere, a town by the sea with a local tradition of being the birthplace of Venus.

Whatever inspired the artist, there are clear similarities to Ovid's Metamorphoses and Fasti, as well as to Poliziano's Verses.

The classical goddess Venus emerges from the water on a shell, blown towards shore by the Zephyrs, symbols of spiritual passions. She is joined by one of the Horae, goddesses of the seasons, who hands her a flowered cloak.

The effect is distinctly pagan, considering it was made at a time and place when most artworks depicted Roman Catholic themes. It is somewhat surprising that this canvas escaped the flames of Savonarola's bonfires, where a number of Botticelli's other alleged pagan influenced works perished. Botticelli was very close to Lorenzo de' Medici. Because of their friendship and Lorenzo's power, this work was spared from Savonarola's fires and the disapproval of the church.

The anatomy of Venus and various subsidiary details do not display the strict classical realism of Leonardo da Vinci or Raphael. Most obviously, Venus has an improbably long neck, and her left shoulder slopes at an anatomically unlikely angle. Some have suggested it prefigures mannerism.

Sandro Botticelli
Alessandro di Mariano di Vanni Filipepi, better known as Sandro Botticelli or Il Botticello ("The Little Barrel"; March 1, 1445 – May 17, 1510) was an Italian painter of the Florentine school during the Early Renaissance (Quattrocento). Less than a hundred years later, this movement, under the patronage of Lorenzo de' Medici, was characterized by Giorgio Vasari as a "golden age", a thought, suitably enough, he expressed at the head of his Vita of Botticelli. His posthumous reputation suffered until the late 19th century; since then his work has been seen to represent the linear grace of Early Renaissance painting, and The Birth of Venus and Primavera rank now among the most familiar masterpieces of Florentine art.




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