|Date made:||ca. 1750|
|Medium and support:||lead|
|Dimensions:||33.5 × 10.5 × 12 cm, 5 kg|
Georg Raphael Donner is the most renowned Austrian baroque sculptor in the first half of the 18th century. He began his studies in Vienna and continued in Dresden. Later on, he seems to have travelled to Italy. Donner was active as a sculptor
in Salzburg, Vienna, and Bratislava. In the latter city he was court sculptor and director of building works for Imre Esterházy (1663−1745), archbishop and primate of Esztergom. Having been influenced by the Italian art he saw on his study tour and by the Renaissance bronzes housed in the Liechtenstein Collection in Vienna, he introduced classical forms to his art. The classical forms inspired four of his small lead sculptures, which represent figures of antique mythology. The series used to be the decoration of the Bánffy Castle in Bonṭida (Romania): the statuette of Venus and Mercury has survived in several versions.