An Italian Neoclassical period walnut panel from the early 19th century, carved in high relief with two putti riding a shell on the sea with dolphins. This Italian carved panel features a mythological theme, depicting two putti riding an elegant sea shell, drawn by a group of dolphins at sunrise or sunset. Typical of the Neoclassical taste for the Antiquity, this aquatic theme places us in the presence of water sprites putti, who represent the essence of the water and its life-giving force. The treatment of the subject conveys this idea, the putti being fully engaged in their activity. The putto in the foreground seems to be looking at us, making us witnesses of the scene. His forward movement highlights the strength of the dolphins who are pulling the shell. The second putto, casually sitting at the top of the shell, is holding a cloth that seems to be blown by the air. The technique goes from low to high relief, accentuating the impression of movement. In the background, the incised sun is either rising or setting. With its mythological theme, quality of execution and petite proportions, this Italian carved panel circa 1820 will bring a touch of elegance to any wall.
Place of Origin: Italy
Period: 19th Century
Dimensions: 16" W x 2" D x 23"H
Inventory Number: BB126