This painting is part of the group: Villa Aldobrandini Frescoes

For the subject of this fresco see Apollodorus, 'Library' (3: 10). Apollo slew the one-eyed race of giants, the Cyclops, because they had provided Zeus with the thunderbolts which killed his son, Aesculapius.

The fresco (transferred to canvas) comes from a series painted in the Stanza di Apollo in the garden pavilion at the Villa Aldobrandini, Frascati.

The classical scene was painted as a trompe-l'oeil tapestry, probably by assistants. Domenichino's participation in the painting was likely limited to the portrait of the dwarf in chains at lower right. This member of the Aldobrandini household was depicted in this derisive fashion for his insolence.

An autograph life study of the dwarf (Windsor, Royal Collection) is the only drawing to survive for this composition.

Key facts

Artist
Artist dates
1581 - 1641
Full title
Apollo killing the Cyclops
Group
Date made
1616-18
Medium and support
Fresco, transferred to canvas and mounted on board
Dimensions
316.3 x 190.4 cm
Acquisition credit
Bought, 1958
Inventory number
NG6290
Location in Gallery

Other paintings in the group: Villa Aldobrandini Frescoes

Painting
Domenichino and assistants
1616-18
Domenichino and assistants: 'Apollo slaying Coronis'
Painting
Domenichino and assistants
1616-18
Domenichino and assistants: 'The Judgement of Midas'
Painting
Domenichino and assistants
1616-18
Domenichino and assistants: 'The Transformation of Cyparissus'
Painting
Domenichino and assistants
1616-18
Domenichino and assistants: 'Apollo pursuing Daphne'
Painting
Domenichino and assistants
1616-18
Domenichino and assistants: 'The Flaying of Marsyas'
Painting
Domenichino and assistants
1616-18
Domenichino and assistants: 'Apollo and Neptune advising Laomedon'
Painting
Domenichino and assistants
1616-18
Domenichino and assistants: 'Mercury stealing the Herds of Admetus'