Listen to the bright and vernal opening sinfonia of Acis and Galatea while taking in the mythical scene at the Medici Fountain in the Jardin du Luxembourg.
September 17th, 2016 by M. Elise Hillestad
In this second installment of the Sound + Sculpture series, the statue of lovers Acis and Galatea surprised by the jealous giant Polyphemus at the Medici fountain, Jardin du Luxembourg in Paris, is paired with Handel‘s pastoral opera of the same subject.
Listen to the bright and vernal opening sinfonia of Acis and Galatea in the video below while taking in the mythical scene, which was added to the pre existing Medici fountain in 1866 by French sculptor Auguste Ottin. The cyclops Polyphemus whose name means “abounding in song and legend“, is the son of Poseidon and is first introduced in Homer’s Odyssey. In Ottin’s scene, the giant, who is sculpted in bronze sneaks up on the sea-nymph Galatea , whom he is in love with, and her lover the shepherd Acis. The lovers are carved from white marble. He intends to crush his rival with a boulder, but Galatea changes Acis into a river spirit, immortalizing their love.