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This allegory by Giovanni Battista Pittoni the younger, an important exponent of the Venetian Rococo style, has been variously interpreted. Pittoni probably turned to Cesare Ripa's iconographic handbook 'Iconologia' for his allegorical figures. Summer is personified as a young woman, and Winter as an old man warming his hands over a brazier. Summer gestures to the spirit of the Dawn, at the top right, whose urn of water provides the dew droplets of summer and the frost in the winter.
Bristol Museum & Art Gallery
oil on canvas
H 146 x W 118 cm
purchased with the assistance of the Victoria and Albert Museum Purchase Grant Fund, 1964