Four seasons - Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter

Massimiliano Soldani Benzi1715

Royal Collection Trust, UK

Royal Collection Trust, UK

These bronze reliefs were ordered from the sculptor in Florence by the 3rd Earl of Burlington, using models first devised for the Elector Palatine some years earlier. Soldani's bronze reliefs were always intended to hang alongside paintings in a gallery. Spring and Winter were the first to be made: they feature respectively Flora, Vertumnus and Pomona, and Mars and Venus at Vulcan's forge. Summer and Autumn were first modelled in 1711, somewhat later than the other two. Summer is a triumph of Ceres, goddess of agriculture, with her disciple Triptolemus, while in Autumn, the drunken Silenus appears before Bacchus and Ariadne.The original set, dated 1708 and 1711 are in the National Museum, Munich. A pair of Summer and Autumn plaques are in the Helen Foresman Spencer Museum of Art, Kansas.

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  • Title: Four seasons - Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter
  • Creator: Massimiliano Soldani-Benzi
  • Date Created: 1715
  • Physical Dimensions: w663 x h483 mm
  • Type: Sculpture
  • Rights: Supplied by Royal Collection Trust / (c) HM Queen Elizabeth II 2012
  • External Link: http://www.royalcollection.org.uk/collection/21932
  • Medium: Cast bronze with ebonised pearwood frames
  • Provenance: Belonged to Lord Burlington (1694-1753) possibly ordered on his Grand Tour visit to Florence, in 1715. Subsequently presented to George II and hung in Kensington Palace.