mage: Wax Head by Clemente Susini; Copyright of University of Cagliari, Italy
Art, Wax, Death and Anatomy
Illustrated lecture with art historian Roberta Ballestriero
3rd June 2013
Doors at 6:30 / Talk begins at 7:00 pm
Ticket price £7
Wax modelling, or ceroplastics, is of ancient origin but was revived in 14th century Italy with the cult of Catholic votive objects, or ex votos. With the rise of Neoclassicism this art became repulsive to artistic sensibilities; it did, however, continue to survive in a scientific environment, where it flourished in the study of normal and pathological anatomy, obstetrics, zoology and botany. Interest in anatomical wax models spread throughout Europe during the eighteenth century leading to the creation of beautiful collections where art and death harmonically cohabit. In today's illustrated lecture, Art Historian Roberta Ballestriero will discuss the art and history of wax modeling sacred and profane; she will also showcase many of its greatest masterworks, such as the anatomical head by Clemente Susini (1754-1814) seen above.
Roberta Ballestriero is an associate lecturer in History of Art for the Open University, in U.K. She graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts of Venice, and had her a European PhD for the Complutense University of Madrid. Her research concerns the history of Ceroplastic and wax figures throughout the centuries, (with emphasis on the ‘body of wax’). She started her research on the art of ceroplastics in 1995 and since 2004 she has presented at numerous conferences and has published several articles on her thesis subjects.
The Last Tuesday Society is honoured to house this exhibition and lecture series cultivated in collaboration with Joanna Ebenstein of the rightfully venerated 'Morbid Anatomy' Library, Museum & Blog.
Talks take place at The Last Tuesday Society at 11 Mare Street, London, E8 4RP - please click here to buy tickets