CORRADINI, Antonio
(b. 1668, Padova, d. 1752, Napoli)

Bust of a Veiled Woman (Puritas)

1717-25
Marble
Museo del Settecento Veneziano, Ca' Rezzonico, Venice

Though Corradini's desire to display his technical skill at times outstripped his inspiration, his virtuosity in marble was remarkable. This bust may be compared with his masterpiece, the statue of Modesty in the Sansevero chapel in Naples, one of the most bizarre works in the history of sculpture.

With great technical virtuosity the sculptor manages to make the marble seem transparent and to depict with extraordinary precision all the details of the beautiful face that emerges from beneath the veil. The work is undoubtedly a religious allegory (probably Purity), but the sculpture conveys the fresh, sensual image of a remarkably beautiful young woman, making it difficult to discern a non-profane meaning.