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Venus
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Joseph Nollekens
British, 1773
Marble
4 ft. 13/16 in. x 1 ft. 8 in. x 1 ft. 8 in.
87.SA.106

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Venus, goddess of beauty and love in ancient mythology, leans on a tree trunk to remove her remaining sandal. She turns inward, drawing the viewer in to examine her nude body. Carved fully in the round, the figure provides views from multiple angles.

Along with statues of Minerva and Juno, Venus illustrates the subject of the Judgment of Paris, drawn from ancient mythology, when Paris was asked to judge which of the three goddesses was the most beautiful. Venus, here carved in a satiny white marble and in the greatest state of undress, won.


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