Vik Muniz

Atalanta and Hippomenes, after Guido Reni – Diptych, 2006

Chromogenic print mounted on aluminum
Diptych: 236 × 360 cm (236 × 180 cm – each part)

The work ‘Atalanta and Hippomenes’, 2006 from the ‘Pictures of Garbage’ series is an appropriation of the painting by Italian painter Guido Reni.

Atalanta was a human huntress whose name derives from the Greek ‘atalantos’ which means ‘equal in weight.’ She was celebrated for her beauty and her speed in running. Her father wanted her in marriage, but Atalanta agreed to marry only if the suitor could beat her at the footrace. The winner of this competition was promised the love, while the loser would have to face death.

Wishing to win the race, the young Hippomenes begged to the goddess Aphrodite for help, and she handed him three golden apples. The apples were so magnificent that every time Atalanta outran Hippomenes, he rolled an apple in front of her, and she couldn’t resist stopping to pick it up. Thus Hippomenes won the race and married his beloved Atalanta.

‘Atalanta and Hippomenes’ by Guido Reni was painted between 1620 and 1625, and is currently in the collection in the Museo Nazionale di Capodimonte in Naples. This painting is a second version of the artist’s earlier work on the same subject, which was completed between 1618 and 1619 and is now in the Museo del Prado.


Vik Muniz. Moscow House of Photography. Nov–Dec 2007
Vik Muniz – Russian Project. Gary Tatintsian Gallery. Oct 2007–Feb 2008


Vik Muniz. Gary Tatintsian Gallery, 2007. pp. 144–145

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