La Belle Italienne (Mask) - Item #744
Each piece is custom finished. Depending on a sculpture’s texture and level of detail, the look of a patina can vary. A slight variation in color from order-to-order is to be expected.
Unless otherwise noted, our reproductions are hand-cast in plaster and reinforced with burlap, fiber strands, and/or metal rods for extra strength.
FLAT WHITE: A unified, matte white finish. This is the optimum patina for cast drawing as it allows focus on form.
WHITE PATINA: A white finish with a light ivory tone added to the top surfaces.
LIGHT ANTIQUE PLASTER: A soft mixture of whites, grays, and yellows to replicate the look of an aged plaster cast.
ANTIQUE PLASTER: A dramatic mixture of grays and yellows to replicate the look of an aged plaster cast.
BRONZE: A rich brown finish with golden highlights to replicate the look of bronze.
STONE: A mixture of lighter tones to resemble natural stone.
DARK STONE: A mixture of darker tones to resemble natural stone.
SANDSTONE: A soft base color with warm highlights to resemble the look of natural sandstone.
TERRA COTTA: A variation of warm tones to resemble terra cotta.
ASSYRIAN STONE (Applies only to item numbers 3, 4, 5, 6 and 738): A two-tone patina augmenting the shallow relief sculpture and its stone texture.
TANAGRA PATINA (Applies only to item numbers 317, 318, 319, 320, 800 and 813): A finish that replicates the colors of the Tanagra figurines as shown in the product images.
16 Inches High x 8 Inches Wide x 7 Inches Deep
This mask is also known as the Unknown Woman of the Seine, or L'Inconnue de la Seine in French. The most popular story goes that a woman's body was recovered from the River Seine in Paris in the late 19th century. The pathologist at the morgue found the woman so beautiful, he had a mold-maker come in to create a mold of her face. There are other stories as well, some proposing the mask was not taken from a corpse due to the healthy-looking face and the woman's seemingly posed expression. In any case, around the early 20th century, reproductions of the mask became popular wall-hangings for the home. Her closed eyes and small smile, suggesting a look of peace, and her beauty have captivated people for over a century now. La Belle Italienne has inspired works of art and literature. It also became the face of the first CPR model made around the 1960s that has been used all over the world. Although the identity of the young woman and the origin of the mask may forever be unknown, the woman whose impression was taken has lived on in this mask.
Time Period: Modern, 19th-20th centuries
1911 Catalog ID # - 13525
Sciolino, Elaine. "At a Family Workshop Near Paris, the 'Drowned Mona Lisa' Lives On." The New York Times, Europe, Arcueil Journal, 20 July 2017. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/20/world/europe/paris-mask-picasso-truffaut.html.
Grange, Jeremy. "Resusci Anne and L'Inconnue: The Mona Lisa of the Seine." BBC News Magazine, 16 Oct. 2013. http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-24534069.