Mars

Antonio Susini (Florence 1558–1624 Florence)
Mars
After a model by Giambologna of ca. 1565–70, cast ca. 1600–1608
Bronze
15 5/8 in. (39.5 cm)

Sighting the enemy, Mars halts his stride and swings his sword arm backward to attack. This statuette of the god of war symbolized princely power.

As sculptor to the Medici grand dukes of Florence, Giambologna established the benchmark for the late Renaissance bronze statuette. Mars is a superb example of the many that were cast from Giambologna’s model by his principal assistant, Antonio Susini. The figure’s polished craftsmanship and details, such as the refined engraving of Mars’s eyes and furrowed brow, evidence Susini’s skill.

 

A video created by the Victoria and Albert Museum illustrates the method used to cast the Mars.

Lost Wax Bronze Casting
Duration: 5 minutes
© Victoria and Albert Museum, London