71 x 164 cm
Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna, Austria
Possibly intended for the Duke of Mantua, Federico Il Gonzaga, this painting depicts another tale of Jupiter’s love. In the myth, Jupiter seduces Io, daughter of Inachus, first king of Argos, behind a series of dunes in order to hide from his wife Juno. Correggio portrays Jupiter as a grey smoke, head and hand reaching down to steal a kiss from Io, in a secret loves embrace. Especially noteworthy is the solid figure of Io, enrapt in sensual pleasure, set against the smoky shape of Jupiter. Although the painting may have been intended for the Duke of Mantua, it was sold along with its companion piece Ganymede Abducted by the Eagle, to Emperor Charles V.