The Art Institute’s sequence of four large paintings illustrating the ill-fated love of Armida and Rinaldo from Torquato Tasso’s epic poem Gerusalemme liberata once decorated a “cabinet of mirrors” in the Venetian palace of the distinguished Cornaro family. Giovanni Battista Tiepolo also provided smaller decorative panels and a ceiling painting for what must have been a sparkling, light-filled room. In this, the first narrative scene, the beautiful sorceress Armida sees the young knight Rinaldo asleep and, falling in love with him, decides to carry him away on her cloud-borne chariot. Her actions will distract Rinaldo from his quest of liberating Jerusalem, the chief subject of Tasso’s epic.


  • Title: Rinaldo Enchanted by Armida
  • Creator: Giovanni Battista Tiepolo (Italian, 1696–1770)
  • Date Created: 1742/45
  • Physical Dimensions: 187.5 × 216.8 cm (73 13/16 × 85 3/8 in.)
  • Type: Painting
  • External Link: The Art Institute of Chicago
  • Media: Oil on canvas
  • Credit Line: The Art Institute of Chicago, bequest of James Deering, 1925.700
  • Artist: Giovanni Battista Tiepolo (Italian, 1696–1770)

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