Pro Romanis Art

Augustus Prima Porta

Augustus Prima Porta




8.5″ W x 14″ H (21.59 cm W x 35.56 cm H)
Price: $24 US + shipping and handling
Order Number: 02000xS

11″ W x 17″ H (27.94 cm W x 43.18 cm H)
Price: $35 US + shipping and handling
Order Number: 02000xT

24″ W x 36″ H (60.96 cm W x 91.44 cm H)
Price: $65 US + shipping and handling
Order Number: 02000xL

36″ W x 65″ H (91.44 cm W x 165.10 cm H)
Price: $125 US + shipping and handling
Order Number: 02000xXL

Paper: High quality [name of paper]. Shipped in a sturdy mailing tube to ensure maximum protection.

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Ships from and sold by Pro Romanis Arts.

Original artwork high-resolution scan printed on high quality large format printer (at least 300 dpi) on high quality paper.

Augustus Prima Porta

Pen & ink Fine Art Reproduction


This pen and ink drawing is based on a statue found in 1863, at the house of Livia (Augustus’ wife) at Prima Porta, about 7.5 miles north of Rome along the Via Flaminia. It was her country residence. The statue is located in the Vatican Museum. There is debate concerning its date, 20 BC., or perhaps, later, early in Tiberius’ reign. The form of Augustus is presented in Hellenistic idealized style rather than in the realistic style of Roman portraiture. Nevertheless, Augustus is clearly recognizable. The posture of the figure is reminiscent of classical Greek sculpture. The figure places most of its weight upon the right leg, while the left is bent and relaxed. This gives the statue a feeling of dramatic tension. The pose is the rhetorical adlocutio (speech), raising the right hand, presumably addressing his troops. His left hand holds a consular baton. The bare feet are an allusion to divinity; it’s the way gods and goddesses were depicted in classical sculpture. The narrative on the cuirass is allegorical as well as historical. In the center, it depicts the return of the Roman standards by the Parthians, lost by Crassus at Carrhae. Receiving the standards is a Roman military figure, presumably Tiberius. Surrounding this significant event are the allegorical figures scholars think represent nations subdued by the Romans: the Celts to the right, to the left are nations not completely subdued, Hispania and Germania. Above, is the chariot of the sun, being driven by Sol, illuminating the entire scene. The chariot is preceded by Aurora, goddess of the dawn, who always precedes the sun and the day. Above Aurora is Venus (the morning star), the goddess from whom the Julian family claimed descent. Caelus, the god of the sky, presides over all. Below the scene, on the same longitude as Caelus, reclines the goddess Tellus or Terra Mater. She is the goddess of the earth. We can tell by the cornucopia (horn of plenty) resting on her thighs and the infant at her side. To her left is Apollo, riding a griffin. Apollo is the god who ensured Augustus’ victory at Actium. To the right of Tellus is the goddess Diana, Apollo’s sister, riding a hind. On the shoulder flaps, at the top of the cuirass, are images of a sphinx. This may be a reference to Egypt and its incorporation into the empire by Augustus.

About The Artist, Zygmunt Michalski

Zygmunt (Zyggi) Michalski began drawing from a very young age. He majored in art at Jagiellonian University, one of the oldest universities in the world (established in 1364). There, he studied painting and drawing with Krystyna Wróblewska—member of the Polish Academy of Sciences—a well-regarded painter, graphic artist and book designer. Her work and career have appeared in academic books such as Archiwum Sztuki Polskiej XX Wieku and Tom 2 Twórczość Krystyny Wróblewskiej. She herself studied under the famous painter Ludomir Slendzinski. Michalski also studied under Professor Wiktor Zin at the Architecture Department, University of Krakow. Dr. Zin was a widely published author and a designer of many churches internationally and in Poland. He was a well-known TV personality.

Michalski worked with Zin at the Polish Studios for the Conservation of Cultural Property. Michalski is equally adept at pen and ink drawing and oil painting. He can paint in various styles and is particularly interested in historical and surrealistic subject matter. He is also very strong in portraiture. Zygmunt Michalski has executed more than 25 pieces of art for Pro Romanis. You can see some of Zyggi’s other work at