Posts Tagged ‘Ecce Puer’ Bambino Ebreo’


The mystery and fragility of this head is shocking.

When you’re strolling through a museum and you come upon a Medardo Rosso sculpture of a child’s head, you will be shocked and breathless.  In your instinctive protectiveness you may throw your jacket over the display case and shoo everybody away.

The vulnerability of the child–not just this child, but every child—is made all the more immediate by the fact that the head is made of wax, more precisely,  plaster covered with molten wax.  What could be more fragile. The child is malleable, quite tangibly soft and ephemeral.

Some of his heads of children are cast in bronze.  Even then, the child is fragile and profoundly mysterious.



Medardo Rosso (1858-1928) was an Italian sculptor who lived in Paris where he befriended August Rodin (1840-1917).

Rosso never attained the recognition that Rodin did. Not surprising, since Rodin gave the Belle Epoque Parisians heroically tormented males and reproductively receptive females.


In front of a Rodin, I reflect on what it was like to believe in heroes.

In the presence of a Medardo Rosso, I feel.

All contents copyright (C) 2010 Katherine Hilden. All rights reserved.





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