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The Dramatic Image: Baroque Prints of the 17th Century

Carlo Cesio
Italian, about 1622–about 1682
After Annibale Carracci
Italian, 1560–1609

Hercules Playing the Tambourine for Jole from Galeria nel Palazzo Farnese in Roma (Gallery of the Farnese Palace in Rome)

Etching and engraving, about 1675
Gift of Irving E. Macomber, 1964.3

The hero Hercules has relinquished his signs of power: Jole wears his lion skin cloak, tied about her neck with a knot, and grasps the wooden club that is his weapon of choice. Their legs are intertwined as Hercules plays a tambourine to amuse his lover. A smiling cupid, holding his bow, gazes at the couple mischievously.Cesio uses strongly engraved, curving, and crosshatched lines to give the central figures mass and volume.