The Forge of Vulcan

Hans Jamnitzer II, German, 1538 - 1603
after Cornelis Bos, Dutch, 1506 - 1564
after Maarten van Heemskerck, Dutch, 1498 - 1574


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about 1573

Bronze with traces of gilding

Overall: 6 5/8 × 6 11/16 × 3/16 in. (16.9 × 17 × 0.5 cm)

Weight: 397 g (0.9 lb.)

Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth: Roger Arvid Anderson Collection - 250th Anniversary Gift, 1769-2019



Place Made: Germany, Europe



Object Name


Research Area


On view




The Greco-Roman god Vulcan was a master craftsman, and depictions of this strong, bearded, masculine figure toiling at his forge were popular among sculptors and metalworkers as a reflection of their own work. The three examples here vary in their size and intended function but share a focus on the labor of the mythological creator and his workshop rather than their products. The idealized bodies of Vulcan and his workers celebrate the process of metalworking and position sculptors as worthy of admiration for the physicality of their craft in addition to their artistic ingenuity.

From the 2024 exhibition Living with Sculpture: Presence and Power in Europe, 1400–1750, curated by Elizabeth Rice Mattison, Andrew W. Mellon Curator of Academic Programming and Curator of European Art and Ashley Offill, Curator of Collections

Exhibition History

Ivan Albright Gallery, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, April 17-July 18, 2001.

Living with Sculpture: Presence and Power in Europe, 1400–1750, Citrin Family Gallery and Engles Family Gallery, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, March 23, 2024–March 22, 2025.

Publication History

Roger Arvid Anderson, The Roger Arvid Anderson Collection, Medals, Medallions, Plaquettes and Small Reliefs, Paintings, Sculpture, Works on Paper and Textiles, San Francisco: Roger Arvid Anderson (published privately), design by David L. Wilson, 2015, p. 201.


Cyril Humphris, London, before 1991; sold to Roger Arvid Anderson, San Francisco, California, March 1991; lent to present collection, 1993; given to present collection, 2016.

Catalogue Raisonne

Wixom, No. 220; Weber, No. 475

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