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The painting Perseus and Andromeda or better known as Perseus rescues Andromeda was created by Peter Paul Rubens in 1622. This work of art remained in Rubens’s house until his death, and was then obtained by and housed in the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, Russia. This oil painting tells the story of Perseus returning from slaying Medusa to save Andromeda. It depicts Perseus holding the head of Medusa and loosening the chains on Andromeda, while partially showing Pegasus, the goddess of glory and Cetus the Sea Monster, who was slain earlier.
Perseus and Andromeda was created by Rubens during the Flemish Baroque painting period, which lasted from 1608-1700. This painting period originated in Flanders, a Flemish region of Belgium. Flemish painters, whose paintings had Northern and Italian influences, were the basis of this time period, but it was Rubens who blended the two together and became a catalyst for this Flemish age. Oil painting was a largely exported technique in the Flemish Baroque painting period, and was used on many works such as: The Honeysuckle Bower, Prometheus Bound, and Venus and Adonis. Many paintings in this time period were also not limited to displaying various events, but were also given other significance. A good example is Perseus and Andromeda, because it was also given political significance to symbolize abuse and freedom from enemies. The use of oil painting, Northern-Italian influences, and multiple significances make Perseus and Andromeda very typical of its Flemish time period.
In his painting Perseus and Andromeda, Rubens wanted to primarily portray the liberation of Andromeda from the imprisonment of Cetus the sea monster. Pegasus partially appearing in the picture symbolizes the glory of Perseus slaying Medusa and Cetus, as well as freeing Andromeda. I think that this work by Rubens is an important piece of art because it summarizes the whole tale of Perseus and Andromeda through one painting. I also think that Cetus at the feet of Perseus and Medusa’s head in Perseus’s hand represent victory and freedom from the tyrannous rampage of the sea monster and the hideous Gorgon.
The god I would like to be is Hermes, the Messenger God, because he is very loyal. This is shown in many cases in his loyalty to Zeus, his father, and will almost do anything for him without second thought. As an adult, Hermes was named the Messenger God because he could run and fly as fast as the wind with his winged hat and sandals. Hermes would always get his tasks done and deliver the messages he was assigned from the gods.
Although Hermes was very loyal he had a downside; he was also the god of thieves. Even as a newborn, his thievery was displayed when he stole the cattle from Apollo. When he was questioned by his father, Zeus, he denied everything. Hermes continued his mischief throughout his life and wouldn’t tell the truth very often. Hermes also wasn’t a very good father because his son, Autolycus, also ended up becoming a thief.
Hermes would set a great example in today’s world because of the good characteristics he possesses. He would inspire people to show great loyalty to their superiors and also motivate dedication in the world. Hermes would be a great addition into today’s world because people would be encouraged to work harder because of him, and the world would start turning into a much better place than ever seen before.
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