Item PC/013 - Plaster cast of Laocoon and his Sons

Plaster cast of Laocoon and his Sons (Version 1) Plaster cast of Laocoon and his Sons (Version 2) Plaster cast of Laocoon and his Sons (Version 3) Plaster cast of Laocoon and his Sons (Version 4) Plaster cast of Laocoon and his Sons (Version 5)

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Plaster cast of Laocoon and his Sons


  • 19th century (Creation)

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1 item

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This item was lost in the fire in The Mackintosh Building at The Glasgow School of Art on 15th June 2018. All that remains is a fragment of a hand.

Original: This statue group was found in 1506 on the Esquiline Hill in Rome and immediately identified as the Laocoon described by Pliny the Elder as a masterpiece of the sculptors of Rhodes: Agesander, Athenodoros and Polydorus around 40-30 BC. It shows the Trojan priest Laocoon and his sons Antiphantes and Thymbraeus being strangled by sea serpents. In 1587 Giovanni Battista Armenini's treatise on painting and recommended all students to draw from the casts of the finest statues in Rome- 'the Laocoon, the Hercules, the Apollo, the Great Torso....' of the Belvedere. Listed in first catalogue as Greco-Roman and that the original is located in the Vatican. Original currently in the collection of the Vatican Museums, Rome, Italy.

This item was damaged in the fire in the Mackintosh Building on 23rd May 2014. It underwent conservation and consolidation work in 2016.

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Archival history

Loaned to McLellan Galleries 1 May 1997- 30 September 1997 for 'The Birth of Impressionism' Exhibition (22 May - 7 September 1997).

Custodial history

Thought to have been purchased in 1901 from Brucciani. Listed in 1964/5 inventory as located in the museum and passage ways of the Mackintosh Building (GSAA/GOV/7/5). Listed under 'Statues' in 'Catalogue of Books, Casts etc. of the School of Ornamental Art, Glasgow' (GSAA/GOV/7/1).

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Dimensions: 2100 x 1150 x 630 mm (Plinth: 820 x 1120 x 688 mm)

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