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Lion Attacking Horse, ca. between 1580 and 1590

  • Giovanni da Bologna, Italian, 1529-1608
  • Antonio Susini, Italian, 1580-1624

Bronze, red lacquer

  • Overall: 12 × 10 inches (30.5 × 25.4 cm)

City of Detroit Purchase


On View

  • European: Medieval and Renaissance W231


European Sculpture and Dec Arts

Giambologna's closest collaborator, Antonio Susini founded his own workshop in Florence in 1600 and continued to cast bronzes from models made earlier by Giambologna, an important sixteenth-century sculptor. The quality of the casting and the sharp, precise chasing of this bronze suggest that it derives from a wax model that Susini carefully reworked before casting. This bronze is one of only two known casts bearing Susini's signature: "'ANT SVSINI FIORE. OPVS." The animated group, inspired by a monumental Greco-Roman marble and showing the lion ripping the flesh on the horse's back with the horse's head thrust back in agony, captures a climactic moment in a violent drama.

Signed, on base: ANTo. SVSINI | FLORE. OPVS.

1925, Julius F. Goldschmidt (Goldschmidt Galleries, New York, New York, USA)

1925-present, purchase by the Detroit Institute of Arts (Detroit, Michigan, USA)

Valentiner, W.R. "A Bronze Group by Antonio Susini." Bulletin of the DIA 6, no. 7 (1925): pp. 72-73 (ill.). Valentiner, W.R. "Another signed bronze by Antonio Susini," BURLINGTON MAGAZINE, vol. 41, p. 315 Wentzel, ZEITSCHRIFT FUR KUNSTGESCHICHTE, vol. 3, 1943-44, p. 55 Weihrauch, Bayerisches Nationalmuseum, Munich, DIE BILDWERKE IN BRONZE, 1956, p. 96 Avery, C., and Radcliffe, A., eds, GIAMBOLOGNA 1529-1608: SCULPTOR TO THE MEDICI, Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 1978, no. 170, pp. 186-187 (ill) Avery, C., Radcliffe, A., and Leithe-Jasper, M., eds, GIAMBOLOGNA 1529-1608: EIN WENDEPUNKT DER EUROPAISCHEN PLASTIK, Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna, 1979, no. 133, p. 220 (ill) Center for the Fine Arts, Miami, FL, IN QUEST OF EXCELLENCE, January 14 - April 22, 1984, no. 43, p. 92 (ill) Darr, A.P., "A Valentiner Legacy: Italian Sculpture in Detroit," APOLLO, vol. 124, no. 298, December 1986, pp. 481, 484, no. 21 Leithe-Jasper, M., RENAISSANCE MASTER BRONZES FROM THE COLLECTION OF THE KUNSTHISTORISCHES MUSEUM, VIENNA, 1986, London: Scala Publications Ltd, pp. 226-228, no. 58 Avery, C., Giambologna: The Complete Sculpture, Oxford & Mt. Kisco, New York, 1987, p. 284 MASTERPIECES FROM THE DETROIT INSTITUTE OF ARTS, Tokyo: Bunkamura Museum of Art, 1989, cat. no. 13, (ill) Radcliffe, A., The Robert H. Smith collection: bronzes 1500-1600, London: 1994, pp. 62,65, 66-9, no. 11. A. P. Darr, P. Barnet, A. Boström, with contributions by C. Avery... [et. al.], Catalogue of Italian Sculpture in the Detroit Institute of Arts, London: Harvey Miller Publishers, in assoc. with the Detroit Institute of Arts, 2002, 2 vols., I, cat. 110

Antonio Susini; after Giovanni da Bologna, Lion Attacking Horse, ca. between 1580 and 1590, bronze, red lacquer. Detroit Institute of Arts, City of Detroit Purchase, 25.20.