This oil sketch of Diana's Hunt was probably intended as a companion piece to Meleager and Atalanta or The Calydonian Boar Hunt, which is also held in the Princely Collections, as both share the same format and frieze-like composition. From the right and left Diana and her huntresses are rushing at a stag, which, held at bay by the hounds and wounded by a spear, is sinking to the ground. In the background a hind is attempting to escape. In 1628 Peter Paul Rubens travelled to Madrid on a diplomatic mission, taking eight paintings with him for King Philip IV of Spain which were subsequently hung in the salón nuevo of the Alcazár in Madrid. The description of a "Stag hunt with Diana and five of her nymphs" given in the inventory of the Alcazár in Madrid from 1636 corresponds with the representation in this oil sketch. At the end of the 1640s the painting was hung in the newly-built pieza ochavada and was probably destroyed in a fire in 1734. Given that there is a high degree of correspondence between a studio copy executed after the original destroyed in Madrid which is now in a private collection, it can be assumed that this oil sketch, which was acquired by Prince Hans-Adam II von und zu Liechtenstein in 1999, served as a model for the Madrid painting and should thus be dated to before 1628.
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Peter Paul Rubens
Diana´s Hunt, 1628
Oil on panel, cradled
height 24 cm, width 62 cm
Inv.-No. GE84
Provenance: probably in der collection of the Dukes of Coburg-Gotha, Vienna; acquired by Galerie St. Lucas, Vienna in 1937; in austrian private property before 1999; acquired by Prince Hans-Adam II von und zu Liechtenstein
Further works on display
Decius Mus relating his dream, 1616/1617
The Interpretation of the Victim, 1616/1617
Decius Mus preparing for Death, 1616/1617
The Dismissal of the Lictors, 1616/1617
The Death of Decius Mus, 1616/1617
The Obsequies of Decius Mus, 1616/1617
The Trophy, 1616/1617
The Lamentation, c. 1612
The Assumption of the Virgin, c. 1637
Portrait of Jan Vermoelen, 1616
Oil sketch of Mars and Rhea Silvia, c. 1616/1617
Venus in Front of the Mirror, 1614/1615
Portrait of Clara Serena Rubens, c. 1616
The Discovery of the Infant Erichthonius, c. 1616
Double Portrait of Albert and Nikolaus Rubens, c. 1626/1627
Mars und Rhea Silvia, c. 1616/1617
Christ Triumphant over Sin and Death, 1615/1622
Henry IV seizes the Opportunity to conclude Piece, 1628
Allegory of war, 1628
The Victory of Henry IV at Coutras, 1628
Apollo in the Chariot of the Sun, 1621/1625
The Virgin adorned with flowers, 1609/1610
The Conversion of St. Paul, 1601/1602
St. Francis of Assisi before the Crucified Christ, 1625
The Hunt of Meleager and Atalanta, 1628 (?)
Landscape with Milkmaids and Cows, 1616
Perseus and Andromeda
St. Catherine in the Clouds, 1620/1621
Psyche taken up into Olympus, 1621
Three Music-Making Angels, on the reverse side of St Joachim, 1615/1620
Four Music-Making Angels, on the reverse side of St Anne, 1615/1620
Portrait of a Monk (?)
Adoration of the Magi, 1609/1610
The Visitation, 1611/1612
The Consecration of Decius Mus, 1616/1617
The Obsequies of Decius Mus
Ganymede, 1611/1612
The Assumption of the Virgin, modello, 1637
Samson and Delilah, c. 1610
Satyr and Maid with Fruit Basket, 1615
Portrait of Nicolaas Rockox, 1615
Related themes
Rubens in Wien
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