Boy Holding Dove

Antonio Canova

Italian, 1757 - 1822

Boy Holding Dove, n.d.

  • On View


Dimensions: 12 3/8 × 5 1/8 × 3 in. (31.4 × 13 × 7.6 cm)

Gift of John Lord Booth, 1962.10

This marble sculpture, depicting a young boy holding a dove, is a reflection of the taste for classical subjects during the eighteenth century. While not intended to depict a specific person or even a figure from mythology, this sculpture is meant to evoke the ideals of beauty and youth that so fascinated the ancient Greeks and Romans. Antonio Canova, called “the supreme minister of beauty,” was known for creating and promoting this type of sculpture. A native of Venice, Canova spent time in Rome, studying Greek and Roman antiquities. After Canova’s death in 1822, his style of creating pristine, smooth surfaces fell out of favor. However, the late twentieth century brought a new appreciation for the work of Canova. He was once again acknowledged for his skills as an artist, as well as his style and experimentation.

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