|Eve's Grotto||| Print ||
Returning to our path, immersing ourselves in the shade of nature, among holm oaks, alder trees, chestnuts and the scent of the undergrowth, a short walk downhill leads us to a natural cave where Eve appears, apparently surprised in her nakedness by the curious gaze of the visitors. This piece in marble of extraordinary technical excellence, is the work of the Bolognese sculptor Adamo Tadolini (1788- 1868). This favourite pupil of Antonio Canova became heir to his“studio for the use of sculpture” in Via del Babuino, Rome. “Eve appears to turn, surprised, while her posture and that shy bringing of the hand to the face, communicate feelings of expectation and uneasiness. The technical skill of the sculptor is clear in the softness of the body, in the smooth, almost translucent surface of the white stone and becomes virtuosity in rendering the single locks of hair which, adorned with flowers, flow voluptuously over her naked shoulders. And the magic is renewed at every glance”. The particularly fine quality of the marble and the warm light of the setting sun give rise to an unusual and enthralling vision: seen from the bottom of the cave, struck by the warm rays of the afternoon sun in summer, for a moment Eve seems to find new life and the cold white stone appears to acquire the pink fleshiness that once perhaps was hers.