Female bust


(Savignano/Prato 1777 – Florence 1850)

Female bust
End of the second decade of the 19th century
White marble, h. 26.57 in

This work of exquisite quality in an excellent state of conservation shows, in barely more than a half bust, a portrait of a young lady with delicate and regular facial features, very evident in the harmonious definition of the eyes and brow ridges, the small, well-shaped nose, the thin, slightly open lips and the smooth forehead and perfect oval shape. Creating an appropriate frame for the marvellous face of the figure we see an elaborate hair style, tied in a braid pinned as a crown at the top of the head, supported by combs and clips that magnetically highlight the well-designed curly ringlets at the temples. In contrast to the face and hair, the lower part of the bust is rendered with greater simplicity, resulting from the “severe” linearity of the dress which, without decorative elements, completely directs the attention to the borders of the neckline and the straps.
The characteristics of the style, the precision of the execution and the accurate definition of the figure lead us to recognise the author of the work, whose ab antiquo origins we ignore for the moment, as Lorenzo Bartolini, a key figure of Italian sculpting between Neoclassicism and Romanticism.

Excerpt of the expertise by prof. Sandro Bellesi in the catalogue of the exhibition “Fascination and elegance in Neoclassical art”, 2022.


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