Alexander and Bucephalus
One of the rare examples of Italian painting in the collections of the Petit Palais, this is a small canvas of remarkable quality.
We do not know if it is a sketch for a major decorative painting that was never produced, or one of the many small, very freely executed yet generally very accomplished paintings made by Tiepolo at the height of his career, both for his own pleasure and to satisfy his many clients.
According to Plutarch, at the age of 13 Alexander the Great was challenged by his father Philip II, King of Macedonia, to ride a wild horse named Bucephalus.
Realising that he was afraid of his own shadow, Alexander turned him to face the sun and tamed him. Philip then told him: “My boy, you must find a kingdom big enough for your ambitions. Macedon is too small for you”.
M. A. P.