barber institute of fine arts
university of birmingham

Paris Bordone (1500 – 1571)

A Mythological Scene

Venice, the 1530s

Oil on wood

41.7 x 96.3 cm


In the centre a young man playing a viola da gamba is garlanded by a woman, whilst others pick blossom and gather blooms.  Venetian artists in the first half of the 16th century painted numerous pastoral scenes in which youths languidly make music. 

It is likely that no specific subject was intended beyond an idyllic union of the beauties of landscape and music.  The oblong format suggests that the panel formed part of a series which decorated a room, possibly a library.  The Venetian artist, Paris Bordone, specialised in small mythological scenes.


Purchased 1961 (No.61.3)

Jean Morin (c. 1590-1650)

Omer Talon


Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres, after Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519)

La belle Ferronnière


Henri Matisse (1869-1954)

Nude in Three-Quarter Profile, Part of the Head cut away


Rodin, Auguste (1840 – 1917)

Bust of Victor-Henri, Marquis de Rochefort-Lucay