The Return of Odysseus (Homage to Pinturicchio and Benin)

A work made of collage comprised of cut-and-pasted papers, with graphite and touches of brush and black and gray wash, on wood panel.

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  • A work made of collage comprised of cut-and-pasted papers, with graphite and touches of brush and black and gray wash, on wood panel.

Date:

1977

Artist:

Romare Howard Bearden
American, 1911-1988

About this artwork

This collage is one of series completed in 1977 depicting scenes from Homer’s epic poem The Odyssey. Romare Bearden’s composition mimics the Italian painter Bernardino Pintoricchio’s early-16th-century painting of Odysseus returning home after the Trojan War. However, Bearden’s reinterpretation moves the scene to the West African country of Benin. By changing the ethnicity of the characters, Bearden made the story more accessible to minority audiences. He said of the series, “It is universal. So if a child in Benin or in Louisiana . . . sees my paintings of Odysseus, he can understand the myth better.”

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Prints and Drawings

Title

The Return of Odysseus (Homage to Pinturicchio and Benin)

Origin

United States

Date

1977

Medium

Collage comprised of cut-and-pasted papers, with graphite and touches of brush and black and gray wash, on wood panel

Dimensions

1,118 x 1,422 mm

Credit Line

Mary and Leigh Block Fund

Reference Number

1977.127

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 .

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