17th Century Baroque Penitent Magdelene Terra Cotta Sculpture


Baroque sculpture of the late seventeenth century terracotta depicting the Penitent Madeleine.

The Madeleine is a character who has always been very present in painting and sculpture, one of the most beloved sacred images of Italian and European art, a saint with often contrasting faces, whose figurative fortune reflects the great development exercised since ancient times in the collective imagination. The works that represent it are numerous and go back to the end of Antiquity, taking an iconographic richness characterized by very different representative contexts. The figurative development of this character, in fact, did not have a regular and uniform course, but revolved around a complex and heterogeneous path.
Maddalena’s iconography often presents her as a penitent with long hair, represented in prayer, with a skull beside her (often also a book or a mirror). This is due to the fact that historically Mary Magdalene was identified with the anonymous “sinner”, the prostitute who throws herself at the feet of Christ, wipes them with her tears, wipes them with her hair and sprinkles them with a fragrant scent.
Much luck will have the episode told in the golden legend that Mary Magdalene, after the death of the master, retired to be a hermit, between fasting and penance, in a cave of Provence, spending thirty years until the end of his days. The representation of the Penitent Magister and hermit will have a special chance from the sixteenth century and the character will undergo an evolution more and more marked towards the sexual characterization of the figure.


H 36 cm

L 33 cm

W 17 cm

1 in stock


All the objects are accompanied by an invoice, a certificate of authenticity and, according to the cases, a technical sheet and an expertise.

I take care of all the customs formalities.

Packing in customized wooden box.

Shipping costs: please, contact me with delivery address, I will reply as soon as possible.