Famous Medusa Paintings

medusa in art

Medusa was considered one of the most terrifying creatures in Greek mythology. She was a Gorgon, a creature portrayed as a human female with wings and live poisonous snakes for hair. Everyone who looked at her face would be turned to stone.

our list of famous medusa paintings


Medusa Mosaic (c. 1st Century CE) by Unknown


Medusa-Murtola (1596) by Caravaggio


Head of Medusa (1618) by Peter Paul Rubens


Head of Medusa (1680) by Godfried Maes


Medusa (1901) by Arnold Böcklin

why was medusa shown in art?

Over the centuries, the tale of Medusa has been interpreted and reinvented in a number of ways, and artists have found several ways to portray her in their works.  The Medusa drawings by Maes, as well as the iconic Medusa paintings by Caravaggio, Rubens, and others, are among the most recognized portrayals of Medusa in art.