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Female Nude Sculpture After Homer’s Odyssey

female nude marble sculpture

Since I was a tween, I have had a fascination with ancient Greek mythology. I took inspiration for “Siren Seduction” from Homer’s Odyssey – the story of how Odysseus (Ulysses) returned by sea to his home of Ithaca after the end of the Trojan War. This journey took ten years, and many events unfolded, including his ship passing the island of the Sirens.

The Sirens were irresistible seductresses who sang to passing seamen and lured them to their death. Sailors would steer their craft towards the island’s rocky shore where they would founder and drown. Odysseus knew of the peril, but still wanted to hear the Siren’s song. He ordered his crew to lash him to the mast and to put wax into their own ears. This way, only Odysseus would hear the song, but he would be unable to do anything but listen, and his crew would steer the ship past the island unharmed.

I have created one of the Sirens, languishing upon the rocky shore of her island in a seductive pose meant to entice the attention of the viewer. She twists her hips and her right knee is raised, exposing the center of her femininity. Her physique is slim and athletic and I have discerned the details of her musculature, yet kept a soft, feminine composition. The sculpture is meant to be erotic in nature. I have used a piece of statuario marble from the quarries of Carrara, Italy. This is the same type of marble that Michelangelo insisted upon carving 500 years ago.

I have left the texture of the rocks rough and used a rondel chisel texture for the drapery on which the Siren lays. Her hair is the texture from a fine toothed chisel and her skin is silky smooth. All surfaces are a matte finish, allowing the marble its maximum ability to hold shadow.