Luca Giordano, The fresco on the ceiling of the Cason, Céfiro's Detail.

Luca Giordano, Zephyrus, 1687-89. Oil on canvas. Private Collection

Giordano “ransacked” his own earlier paintings in search of subjects or figures that he could include in the Casón. We thus find that many of the motifs were developed in his own work prior to his arrival in Madrid.

One such example is the image of Zephyrus, the personification of Wind in Roman mythology, and the large group that accompanies him, all associated with the Golden Age. The main figures and symbols in this group derive from a painting executed during Giordano’s Florentine period and which in 1697 belonged to the Marquis of Santiesteban, Viceroy of Naples and one of the artist’s most important Spanish patrons.

The painting includes all the elements subsequently used in the Casón: Zephyrus himself, the birds, a putto on whom wings are being placed and one with a toy that catches the wind.

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