Wiktor Brodzki
First Whispers of Love, 1881
DaGift of the artist, 1883
material: marble

dimensions: 138 × 80 × 62 cm

description: The scene shows Venus, who is leaning her head towards the winged Cupid to listen to him. The goddess’s mysterious smile suggests the frivolous character of their conversation. Technical virtuosity: impeccably smooth modelling and meticulously rendered detail are the characteristic features of Wiktor Brodzki’s sculpture. Heavily draped fabric, the quiver and arrows belonging to Cupid and the pigeon, an attribute of Venus, are rendered with extreme attention to detail. A limited range of motifs and their frequent repetition – another characteristic of the artist’s oeuvre – resulted to a large extent from an enormous demand for his marble statues. The renown of the talented sculptor, a protégé of the imperial family and, from 1862, a member of the St. Petersburg Academy of Arts led to a considerable interest in his works. The artist produced three versions of these sculpture (the other two ended up in Saint Petersburg). The studied posing of figures and the idealization of their facial features reflect inspiration by the dispassionate style of Antonio Canova. Brodzki’s interpretation of academism is also marked by clear allusions to Rococo. The sculpture First Whispers of Love – a light anecdote in the interpretation permeated with sweetness – reminds of the art of the French Rococo sculptors: Clodion and Edmé Bouchardon. Agata Małodobry

exposition: The Gallery of 19th Century Polish Art in Sukiennice,
The Cloth Hall, 1, Main Market Square

key: Around the academy >>>

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