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Two Male Heads after the Antique, the Sons of Laocoön

A work made of red chalk on ivory laid paper.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of red chalk on ivory laid paper.

Date:

c. 1605

Artist:

Hendrick Goltzius
Dutch, 1558–1617

About this artwork

Surviving drawings in other collections prove that Hendrick Goltzius studied firsthand the famed Laocoön group, an ancient Roman sculpture unearthed to great fanfare in the early 1500s. The monument was widely revered as an ideal representation of human torment, made more famous by printed representations.

Goltzius created this red-chalk drawing at least a decade after his visit to Rome in 1591, employing specific motifs for his own expressive ends. Extracting the faces of Laocoön’s sons from the sculptural ensemble and reversing their left-to-right order, Goltzius blended the red chalk to emphasize the protruding volumes of the neck muscles. By applying greater pressure, he reinforced the contour lines of the figures, particularly around the sides of their faces.

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Prints and Drawings

Artist

Hendrick Goltzius

Title

Two Male Heads after the Antique, the Sons of Laocoön

Origin

Netherlands

Date

1600–1610

Medium

Red chalk on ivory laid paper

Dimensions

160 x 252 mm

Credit Line

Regenstein Acquisition Fund

Reference Number

2014.983

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.

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