So on this visit to the museum, my usual slow dawdling amble through the galleries and rooms was reduced to a snail-paced crawl with camera in hand. But I was one happy snail. More than head-on individual photos of the paintings, what particularly captured my optic fancy was being able to snap the paintings and sculptures in context, from different angles to frame them in the company of their illustrious art siblings and neighbours.
|Despite her fame for fearlessness, Marcello's bronze Pythian Sibyl seems frightened of the larkspurs in Henri Fantin-Latour's 1891 oil panting. Here's a question for you: what might dolphins have to do with both of these works of art? For a fascinating essay on this work and the sculptress who produced it, Marcello (Duchesse de Castiglione-Colonna, born Adele d'Affry), see this article in the journal Nineteenth-Century Art Worldwide.|
This room featured a curious triptych composed of Adriano Cecioni's 1868 bronze Boy With a Rooster and Auguste Rodin's The Thinker framing Thomas Eakins' Crucifixion ...
|Startled and afraid, the crying child closes his eyes and holds on for dear life to his crowing dawns. No one had yet told him that paradise had been lost, that the true paradises are the paradises we have lost (Proust).|
|Meanwhile, naked with his thoughts, the thinker is pondering what the difference might be, if any, between Christ dying on the cross to save humanity and humanity crucifying Christ to save itself (in the words of Antonio Machado).|
|Rodin, Renoir, mom. |
I love this photograph, although I may be opening myself to the critique that I have harnessed here the classic female triumvirate of the male imagination: voluptuous nude, washerwoman, mother. Oh well, so be it...