Italy | c. 1900
This substantial bronze depicting a naked young woman lying across a bench towards a seated naked young man, the group set on a naturalistic plinth base. Both figures shown in contemplation of a human skull, providing a shockingly dramatic contrast between the transient nature of youthful beauty and the frailty of the human condition.
Luigi de Paoli was well known for his specialisation in nude studies. In 1881 in Turin he exhibited the group ‘Bisca’, representing a partially nude young woman with a young man at her feet, then in 1886 in Milan he exhibited ‘Lune de Miel’, a group showing a young woman and man in a passionate embrace.
The present group bears the scupltor’s signature, ‘L. de Paoli’ to the front right of the plinth and the foundry mark, ‘F uso F. Brolli’, to the front left.
Measurements: 22 ½” (57cm) High 38 ½” (98cm) Wide 15” (38cm) Deep