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  • Helen Recognizing Telemachus, Son of Odysseus

    Artist:
    Lagrenée, Jean-Jacques, the younger. 1739-1821
    Technique:
    oil
    Dimensions:
    48x64 cm

Lagrenée, Jean-Jacques, the younger. 1739-1821

Helen Recognizing Telemachus, Son of Odysseus

France, 1795

The subject of this painting is taken from Classical mythology. Until recently it has been considered as a subject from Seneca's tragedy Phaedra. Now the picture's original name has been restored as Helen Recognizing Telemachus, Son of Odysseus. Lagrenée produced this work being inspired by Homer's Odyssey (Book 2, Song 2, 105-135). While travelling, Telemachus visited Menelaus at Sparta, who was Odysseus's companion-in-arms in the Trojan War. Menelaus, who did not recognize Telemachus, told him about the tragic fate of his father. The sorrowful Telemachus has covered his face with his cloak. His friend is consoling him. Standing to the left is Athena in the likeness of Mentor. At that moment Helen and Menelaus recognize Odysseus's son. The subject of the painting, the strictly balanced composition, the type of clothing, architecture and ornamental patterns are in keeping with the tastes of neoclassical art.

Title:

Helen Recognizing Telemachus, Son of Odysseus

Place:

Date:

Material:

Technique:

oil

Dimensions:

48x64 cm

Acquisition date:

Entered the Hermitage in 1925; transferred from the Yusupov Palace Museum in Leningrad; formerly in the Yusupovs' collection

Inventory Number:

ГЭ-5813

Category:

Collection:

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