Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione "The Animals entering the Ark"

Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione "The animals entering the ark"

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Author/ School/ Dating:

Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione, called il Grechetto (Genoa, 1609 - Mantua, 1664)

Technique and Dimensions:

Oil on canvas, 178 x 243 cm


Inv. no. 412


Donation Marquis Giacomo Spinola, 1838

Object Type:



The painting depicts one of the artist’s favourite subjects, which he tackled many times over his career and which forms part of a tradition of animal painting present in Genoa with the works of the Bassanos, Scorza, and Flemish painters such as the de Wael brothers or Jan Roos. The episode appears to be a pretext for the meticulous depiction of animals and household goods; a comparison with a drawing depicting the same subject, kept in the Royal Collection in Windsor Castle and dated by Blunt to 1648-1655, suggests it dates to his later years.