Suicide of Lucrece

Simon Vouet

Simon Vouet - Suicide of Lucrece
The Suicide of Lucrece by Simon Vouet depicts the story of the wife of the Roman noble Tarquinius Collatinus, raped by the son of the last Roman king of Etruscan origin, Sextus Tarquinius. Trying to save her honour Lucrece subsequently committed suicide. The Prague painting dates around 1625 and very probably formed part of the collection of Cardinal Mazarin (1653—1661). In this canvas, Vouet came close to the aesthetics of the Italian Baroque painter Guido Reni, however, the specific gesture of Lucrece’s left hand makes Vouet’s authorship indisputable. The exceptional quality of the Prague work ranks it among the best paintings that Vouet created during his sojourn in Rome between 1613 and 1627. This painting was preceded by another version of this theme – the Potsdam canvas (Sanssouci Castle) – created in 1619. The model for the figure of Lucrece was probably the artist’s lover, the painter Virginia da Vezzo, whom Vouet married in 1626.
measurements: height 197 cm
width 148 cm
in collections:
material: canvas
technique: oil
inventory number: O 14162
gallery collection: Collection of Old Masters