View this artwork by appointment, at Tate Britain's Prints and Drawings Rooms
Van Dyck’s (Sir Anthony Van Dyck 1599–1641) picture, painted 1630–2, was acquired by Louis XIV between 1684 and 1713. The subject is from Virgil’s Aeneid. Venus, using her amorous wiles, persuades her husband Vulcan to forge arms to protect her son Aeneas in a forthcoming battle. The figure of Vulcan is not apparent in Turner’s copy. Turner admired Van Dyck’s rich colouring and expressive handling, and also made notes on his portrait Cardinal Guido Bentivoglio (Palazzo Pitti, Florence), which was then in the Louvre; see folio 33 of this sketchbook (D04316).
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