Arion (1514) by Albrecht Durer

Arion - Albrecht Durer - 1514

Artwork Information

ArtistAlbrecht Durer
Art MovementNorthern Renaissance
Current LocationKunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna, Austria

About Arion

The artwork “Arion” is a mythological painting by Albrecht Dürer, dated to 1514, during the Northern Renaissance period. It is located at the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna, Austria. This piece depicts a scene from ancient mythology.

The artwork vividly illustrates the myth of Arion, a legendary Greek poet and musician. Arion is shown riding on the back of a dolphin, a scene that stems from the story in which he was saved by a dolphin after being thrown overboard by sailors who coveted his wealth. Dürer’s delicate rendering captures Arion playing the lyre, mid-song, as the dolphin gracefully navigates the waves. The intricate pen work and use of color showcase Dürer’s skill in portraying both human figures and creatures of myth. The Latin inscription above the figures, “PISCE SUPER CURVO VECTUS CANTABAT ARION,” reinforces the storytelling component of the piece, indicating that “Arion sang above the curved back of the fish [dolphin].”

Dürer’s draftsmanship, particularly his attention to detail and the fluidity of motion, is typical of the Northern Renaissance style, where there was a strong emphasis on realism and textual description in artwork. “Arion” is a fine example of this, encapsulating the artist’s fascination with classical antiquity and the human form.

Other Artwork from Albrecht Durer

More Northern Renaissance Artwork

Scroll to Top