Sleep, Myths and Allegories in the Painting "Amor" from the Collection of the Lithuanian National Museum of Art
Keywords:Lithuanian National Museum of Art, Western European art, classical mythology, Amor, François Lemoyne, iconography of sleep
Enveloped in mystery and provoking imagination, the world of sleep and dreams has been a rich source of inspiration for artists since the earliest times. The cornerstones of the secular iconography of sleep in Western art were laid by classical Greek and Roman culture. In the course of centuries, quite a few adventures of gods, goddesses and heroes described in classical myths and other works of literature of that time inspired many artworks interpreting the mythological heritage, which were in some way related to rest or dreams. There is an example of such work in Lithuania as well – the collection of the Lithuanian National Museum of Art (hereinafter referred to as LNMA) boasts an image of the sleeping mythical god of love Amor, created by an unknown artist after the 1729 painting by the French painter François Lemoyne (1688–1737) possibly in the 18th century or the first half of the 19th century, and the search for the history and meaning of the iconography of this work is the main subject of this article.