Medusa (Caravaggio)

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Italian: Testa di Medusa
Caravaggio - Medusa - Google Art Project.jpg
Artist Caravaggio
Year 1597
Type Oil on canvas mounted on wood
Dimensions 60 cm × 55 cm (24 in × 22 in)
Location Uffizi, Florence

Caravaggio painted two versions of Medusa, the first in 1596 and the other presumably in 1597.

Original works[edit]

The first version (1596) is also known as Murtula, after poet Gaspare Murtola (d. 1624), who wrote of it: "Flee, for if your eyes are petrified in amazement, she will turn you to stone."[1] It measures 48 by 55 cm and is signed Michel A F (Latin: Michel Angelo Fecit), "Michel Angelo made [this]", Michelangelo being Caravaggio's first name. This work is privately owned.

The second version, shown here, is slightly bigger (60×55 cm) and is not signed though often dated 1597[by whom?]. This work is held in the Uffizi Gallery in Florence.[2]

Use in other works[edit]

CrimethInc. created and distributes a poster titled "Beauty Subversion" which features the painting. Alongside a re-colored version of the work is printed "Beauty must be defined as what we are, or else the concept itself is our enemy."[3]


  • Caterina Caneva, La Medusa del Caravaggio restaurata, Retablo, Roma, 2002
  1. ^ Gloria Fossi, Uffizi: Art, History, Collections (Giunti Editore, 2004), p. 530.
  2. ^
  3. ^ CrimethInc. Ex-Workers Collective. "Beauty Subversion". CrimethInc. Retrieved 2017-12-14. 

External links[edit]

  • Medusa at Web Gallery of Art