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Gallery Text

Private patronage of art increased during the sixteenth century, significantly expanding the range of possible subject matter. The new themes often derived from classical models and displayed a naturalism that reflected the growing influence of humanism. Though no longer unequivocally Christian in content, these objects nevertheless continued to address moral issues and to concern themselves with the nature of the soul. For example, the salt cellars, which illustrate the labors of Hercules, are generally a metaphor for the triumph of virtue. With the growth of a mercantile economy and the consequent increase in lay patronage, figures of vanity and death also became popular subjects, as is evidenced by objects in this case.

Identification and Creation
Object Number
1957.210
People
Unidentified Artist
Title
Salt Cellar with Allegorical Scenes
Classification
Vessels
Work Type
vessel
Date
c. 1550
Places
Creation Place: Europe, France, Limoges
Culture
French
Location
Level 2, Room 2540, European Art, 13th–16th century, The Renaissance
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Physical Descriptions
Medium
Enamel on copper
Dimensions
sight: 7 x 7.6 cm (2 3/4 x 3 in.)
Provenance
Mrs. Jessie Isidor Straus, gift; to Fogg Art Museum, 1957
Acquisition and Rights
Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Fogg Museum, Gift of Mrs. Jesse Isidor Straus in memory of her husband, Jesse Isidor Straus, Class of 1893
Accession Year
1957
Object Number
1957.210
Division
European and American Art
Contact
am_europeanamerican@harvard.edu
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Exhibition History

32Q: 2540 Renaissance, Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 11/01/2014

Subjects and Contexts

Google Art Project

Related Works

This record was created from historic documentation and may not have been reviewed by a curator; it may be inaccurate or incomplete. Our records are frequently revised and enhanced. For more information please contact the Division of European and American Art at am_europeanamerican@harvard.edu