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  • Agostino Veneziano (Agostino de' Musi)
The Witches' Rout (The Carcass)
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The Witches' Rout (The Carcass) about 1520
This print shows the procession of a witch through a dark and menacing underworld. She is pulled on a chariot made from the carcass of a monstrous creature, and is accompanied by men, children, animals, and instruments. Iconographically these recall scenes of Bacchic parades. Compositionally the horizontal arrangement evokes processional reliefs found on classical sarcophagi. This print was engraved by Agostino Veneziano, but based on an original design by another artist whose identity has been open to debate. The subject of the print is also unclear. Attempts have been made to identify the figure with a specific textual source, or as a particular witch such as Erichtho, Hecate or the witches of the ‘Furious Horde’, but no single theory has proved convincing. Mystery is maintained, as the meaning and function of this complex image remains unknown.

Glossary Open

Composition

The arrangement of different elements in a work of art.

Engraving

The printmaking technique in which an image is inscribed on a copper plate with a tool that cuts a groove in the surface. This groove holds the ink that creates the print when it is applied to paper. Also refers to the method of making an incision on a material such as glass.

Icon

A devotional image, usually depicting Christ, the Virgin Mary or a saint, traditionally associated with the Byzantine, Greek and Roman Orthodox Churches. By extension, it is used to denote an important and enduring symbol.

Print

An image pressed or stamped onto paper or fabric. This encompasses a wide variety of techniques, usually produced in multiples, although one-off prints, known as monoprints, are also included. The term is also applied to photographic images.

Relief

A form of sculpture where the image or design projects from a flat surface types of which include, bas-relief or low relief.

Composition, Engraving, Icon, Print, Relief

Details

  • Acc. No. ITALIAN.366
  • Medium Engraving on paper
  • Size 30.70 x 64.80 cm (framed: 90.20 x 74.20 x 7.80 cm)
  • Credit Purchased 1960