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Vintage Rosenthal Fornasetti Temi E Variazioni Motiv 19 Porcelain Plate.


Vintage Rosenthal Fornasetti Temi E Variazioni Motiv 19 Porcelain Plate,

1980s.

(PV0100)


The striking gold-rimmed black and white printed plate depicts a nude female body with the iconic face of Lina Cavalieri as created by Piero Fornasetti on her stomach.


Figurines known as Baubos are found in a number of settings, usually with Greek connections. They were mass-produced in a number of styles, but the basic figure always exposes the vulva in some way.  One way was as a naked headless torso with the face in the body and the vulva in the chin of the face which, obviously, was the inspiration for this Fornasetti variation in the Themes & Variation series.


Diameter: 9 1/4 inches x 1 ¼ inches high


During the 1980's Rosenthal helped revive Fornasetti's reputation by applying some of his most enduring illustrations on their products.


Reference:

(http://www.goddessgift.com/goddess-myths/greek_goddess_baubo.htm)

According to the myths, Demeter was wandering the Earth in deep mourning over the loss of her beloved daughter, Persephone, who had been violently abducted by Hades, the god of the underworld. Abandoning her goddess duties of bringing fertility to the land, she took refuge in the city of Eleusis. The disheartened goddess, disguised as an old woman, was welcomed into the home of the king.


Everyone in the king's household tried to console and lift the spirits of the severely depressed woman, but to no avail—until Baubo showed up. The two women started chatting, with Baubo making a number of humorous, risqué remarks. Demeter began to smile. Then, Baubo suddenly lifted her skirt in front of Demeter.


Different versions of this tale provide very different images of what Demeter saw under Baubo's skirt, but whatever she saw, it finally lifted her out of her depression. She responded with a long and hearty belly laugh!


Ultimately, with her spirits and confidence restored, Demeter persuaded Zeus to command Hades to release Persephone. So, thanks to the lewd antics of Baubo, all was once again right in the world.


(http://www.fornasetti.com/en/story/temavariazioni/)

For Piero Fornasetti, a single idea provided enough inspiration to create infinite variations. In fact, much of his work involved constant evolutions of specific themes. By allowing his imagination to roam freely. Fornasetti was able to constantly reinvent or reinterpret an image.


Of these themes, the most recurrent are: the sun, playing cards, harlequins, hands, self-portraits. But the most famous, the image that inspired Fornasetti to coin the title ‘Tema e Variazioni’, is the enigmatic face of a woman: the opera singer Lina Cavalieri.


He found that now iconic face as he leafed through a 19th century French magazine and became fascinated. Taking her as much as a muse and as a motif, he would return to Lina Cavalieri’s face again and again throughout his career. The archetypal classic female features, and enigmatic expression of Lina Cavalieri became Fornasetti’s most frequently used template and upon which he based more than 350 variations.


Lina Cavalieri’s face, explained Piero Fornasetti, was another archetype – a quintessentially beautiful and classic image, like a Greek statue, enigmatic like the ‘Gioconda’ and therefore able to take shape into the idea that was slowly building in his mind. It was this formal, graphic appeal (rather than Lina Cavalieri’s celebrity) that demanded such loyalty and inspired the spontaneous and ceaseless creativity of Fornasetti. For him, this face became the ultimate enduring motif. With great modesty all these works were reproduced on a series of everyday objects like the plate. Tema e Variazioni shows its variations playing with one idea.








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