About this artwork

The ancient Greek poet Hesiod described how Venus was born fully grown from the sea and was blown ashore on a scallop shell. She landed at Paphos on Cyprus, which became the centre of her worship in antiquity. Titian shows the goddess striding through the shallows while wringing her hair, a pose inspired by classical sculpture. Titian was deliberately inviting comparison with the most celebrated painter of antiquity, Apelles, who had made a famous painting of this subject.

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Updated December 2020

  • artist:
    Titian (Tiziano Vecellio) (about 1485/90 - 1576) Italian
  • title:
    Venus Rising from the Sea ('Venus Anadyomene')
  • date created:
    About 1520
  • materials:
    Oil on canvas
  • measurements:
    74.00 x 56.20 cm. Framed: 103.00 x 84.70 x 14.00 cm / 21.00 kg
  • object type:
  • credit line:
    Accepted in lieu of Inheritance Tax by HM Government (hybrid arrangement) and allocated to the Scottish National Gallery, with additional funding from The National Lottery Heritage Fund, Art Fund (with a contribution from the Wolfson Foundation), and the Scottish Executive, 2003
  • accession number:
    NG 2751
  • gallery:
  • depicted:
  • subject:
  • glossary:
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Titian (Tiziano Vecellio)

Titian (Tiziano Vecellio)