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Michelangelo Buonarroti (Caprese 1475-Rome 1564)

Archers shooting at a herm c.1530

RCIN 912778

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Michelangelo produced a small number of highly finished ‘presentation drawings’ as gifts for friends. A group of youths fire arrows at a target, impelled by two putti kindling a fire. But the winged Cupid, representing spiritual love, sleeps below, and the arrows miss their target. The meaning is that only those guided by love will succeed.