Now on View: This sculpture of a body in perfect balance was probably made in the 17th century by a follower of Giambologna, a Flemish sculptor active in Florence in the late 16th century. It depicts Mercury flying through the air (holes on his helmet and ankles show where small wings were once attached). This composition – made to be seen in the round, with its twisting, coiling pose – was much copied in the 17th and 18th centuries.

Giovanni Bologna (called Giambologna) (Flemish, active in Italy, 1529–1608)
Mercury, 17th century
Gilded bronze
R. T. Miller Jr. Fund, 1945.26

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