It is a portrait of the Holy Roman Emperor Rudolf II re-imagined as Vertumnus, the Roman god of metamorphoses in nature and life. [17] By putting in these particular foreign crops, Rudolf II is revealing that he has access to these items showcasing his power and wealth. The still-life portraits were intended as whimsical curiosities to amuse the court. [16] Arcimboldo's use of corn as Emperor Rudolf II's ear (a crop originating from the New World) thus can be seen as a pointedly political decision. In Roman mythology, Vertumnus was the god of seasons, change, and growth, as well as gardens and fruit trees. Arcimboldo’s unique portraits using the fruits of nature were an expression of the Renaissance mind’s fascination with riddles, puzzles, and the bizarre. Giuseppe Arcimboldo (1527 – 1593) was a painter best known for creating imaginative portrait heads made entirely of objects such as fruits, vegetables, flowers, fish, and books. But. Reimagining the Emperor as Vertumnus, the Roman god of … Rudolf II (1552 – 1612) was Holy Roman Emperor, King of Hungary and Croatia, King of Bohemia, and Archduke of Austria. Vertumnus is an allegorical portrait of Arcimboldo’s employer, the Holy Roman Emperor Rudolph II. View this item in the original Europeana. Giuseppe Arcimboldo was a Mannerist painter whose traditional religious paintings were later forgotten. The … Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. The plants depicted are flowers and fruits from all seasons, symbolising that Rudolf’s reign was one of abundance and harmony. His lifelong quest was to find the Philosopher’s Stone, and he spared no expense in bringing Europe’s best alchemists to his court. The portrait includes gourds, pears, apples, cherries, grapes, wheat, onions, artichokes, beans, peapods, corns,  cabbage, chestnuts, figs, mulberries, plums, pomegranates, pumpkin, and olives. Rudolf has a mixed legacy, which is overshadowed by his mistakes that led directly to the Thirty Years’ War. In the interpretation, Vertumnus acts as a statement claiming that the known world was claimed under Rudolf II and reveals his intention to defeat the Turks- not for the sake of Christianity but more for the sake of global power and the everlasting Hapsburg dynasty. [20][21] It is rumored that Vertumnus was a gift from the Queen Christina to Karl Gustav Wrangel- proprietor of Skokloster. Vertumnus is known worldwide and has been reprod…. A portrait of the Holy Roman Emperor Rudolf II, the painting Vertumnus from 1591 is certainly Arcimboldo's most famous painting. [7] These portraits were an expression of the Renaissance mind's fascination with riddles, puzzles, and the bizarre. His time as Holy Roman Emperor, now named "Rudolfine Prague", set an unprecedented era for the appreciation of art, with much of this cultivation pushed by Rudolf II himself. Arcimboldo's techniques and the medium he used were carefully observed and a preservation technique using krill enzymes (isolated from Antarctic krill) was applied to Vertumnus. [3][4][5] Rather, the use of fruits and vegetables were meant to display Rudolph II's "metamorphoses of power over the world for a ruler". Vertumnus is an oil painting produced by Giuseppe Arcimboldo in 1591 that consists of multiple fruits, vegetables and flowers that come together to create a self-portrait of Holy Roman Emperor Rudolf II. By disguising himself, he was able to gain entry to Pomona’s orchard and seduced her by narrating to her a warning of the dangers of rejecting a suitor. A brief history of the art museum – Smarthistory", "The Landscape of Desire: The Tale of Pomona and Vertumnus in Ovid's "Metamorphoses, "Enzymatic consolidation of the portrait of Rudolf II as "Vertumnus" by Giuseppe Arcimboldo with a new multi-enzyme preparation isolated from Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba)",, Cultural depictions of Rudolf II, Holy Roman Emperor, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 26 November 2020, at 16:32.