Torre di Schiavi

Media - 1977.52 - SAAM-1977.52_1 - 4996
Copied Thomas Hiram Hotchkiss, Torre di Schiavi, 1865, oil on canvas, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Museum purchase, 1977.52
Free to use

Artwork Details

Torre di Schiavi
22 3834 58 in. (56.988.1 cm.)
Credit Line
Museum purchase
Mediums Description
oil on canvas
  • Architecture Exterior — civic — tower
  • Figure
  • Landscape — Italy
  • Landscape — mountain — Appenine Mountains
Object Number

Artwork Description

The landscape where this herdsman sleeps recalls a distant time and place. Thomas Hotchkiss heightened the mystery of this ancient site by including a mosaic of a winged boy on a dolphin from a recently excavated Roman bath as well as a skull and bones in the shadows at the far left. The Torre di Schiavi, or Tower of Slaves, was a popular subject for American artists visiting Italy. The site was associated with an uprising of Roman slaves, an event that would have been particularly meaningful for Americans in 1865, when the Civil War ended and the Thirteenth Amendment abolished slavery.

Exhibition Label, Smithsonian American Art Museum, 2006