PRADIER, James
(b. 1790, Genève, d. 1852, Rueil)

Odalisque (front view)

1841
Marble, height 105 cm
Musée des Beaux-Arts, Lyon

Seen by renowned French artists as one of the "last Greeks", Pradier was fond of mythological subjects. In these he was able to explore the female body sculpturally, especially female nakedness. The marble Odalisque is, however, far removed from any classical model. Attired only in an oriental head-scarf, she sits on a molded plinth, which has a cloth of some sort spread on it. She rests one elbow on her bent left leg and leans forward to grasp her right ankle. Her head is turned round as though she had just become aware of someone behind her entering the intimate space of her nakedness.