The Death of the Niobids II by Salvatore Grippi

The Death of the Niobids II by Salvatore Grippi

The Death of the Niobids II

Salvatore Grippi

Title

The Death of the Niobids II

 
Artist
Year
1952  
Technique
lift-ground etching and engraving 
Image Size
9 15/16 x 11 3/4" platemark 
Signature
pencil, lower right 
Edition Size
proofs only, not editioned 
Annotations
pencil titled and dated 
Reference
 
Paper
soft ivory wove 
State
published 
Publisher
artist 
Inventory ID
21837 
Price
$850.00 
Description

This image was done in 1952 while the artist was working at Atelier 17 in New York with S.W. Hayter. Grippi, like many of the Atelier 17 surrealists, explored Greek and Roman mythology in an attempt to make some historic sense of the chaos of the post WWII world.

Grippi used lift-ground etching and engraving to create this image, composed of lines and tones of gray and black. Human figures are confronted by the Greek deities Artemis or Apollo in a chaotic scene of violence and death. The figures are created by use of short, engraved lines and do not try to define one from another, adding to the sense of confusion and drama.

In Greek mythology, the Niobids were the 12 children of Amphion of Thebes and Niobe, slain by twins Apollo and Artemis because Niobe, born of the royal house of Phrygia, had boastfully compared the greater number of her own offspring with those of Leto, Apollo's and Artemis' mother and was punished for her pride.

The myth relates that Apollo killed Niobe's 6 sons and his sister Artemis killed her 6 daughters.