Oil on canvas. Signed: Sebastiano Conca.
Expert analysis: Prof. Dr. Nicola Spinosa, Naples.
The central motif of this painting is the Roman goddess of the hunt with her typical attributes: the crescent moon on the crown of her head and the quiver of arrows which one of the putti holds. Another characteristic symbol is the hunting dogs, which round out the composition of the half-reclining Diana and three frolicking cherubs. The goddess is draped in a white, richly pleated robe, which beautifully outlines her feminine figure. Diana also has a light red cloak draped across one knee and her lap diagonally from the lower left to the upper right corner, like Diana’s entire figure. The entire scene takes place in a gloomy brown landscape with trees and stones. The goddess reclines across the central rock, one hand resting on another stone and the other hand pointing out of the painting. In the lower part of the scene, a reclining putto is depicted, scantily clothed in bluish robes that gently contrast with his pudgy bare body, beautifully colour-coordinated with the goddess’ garment.