‘Eco and Narcissus”: Kiki Smith
In the ‘Eco and Narcissus” exhibition at Palazzo Barberini, Kiki Smith’s 2004 installation “Large Dessert” dominated the winter audience chamber of the Pope creating a domestic setting. Delicate female figures in Sevres bisque porcelain and flowers are displayed on a long wooden table. Originally created for the Palazzo Quarini Stampalia in Venice, the women and children reference some of the 18th-century figurines of the palazzo. Such figures were used to decorate dining tables during dessert, thus the title. Personal notes such as the table composed of wooden boxes like the furniture of Smith’s childhood. Smith’s leitmotifs of identify, gender stereotypes and the female body are revisited here in the representation of motherhood and childhood. The piece is in the permanent collection of the MAXXI Museum.