Den Bosch Boy

Here is a sculpture for a wonderful setting at Den Bosch, the town that gave the name to one of the most fascinating painters of the Dutch Renaissance, Hieronymus Bosch. The figure recalls one detail in the central panel of his triptych, the Garden of Earthly Desire, the part where a circular procession of men ride a variety of animals, as if on a merry-go-round. Here, at loose in the circular garden of Den Croon, a new building by the Florentine architect, Adolfo Natalini, a she-boar carries a boy while a heron raises him upwards.

The importance of animals in Bosch’s paintings and their interaction with man have to do with a very special way of looking at the world. It brings to mind some issues concerning the role of animals in the world today. The primatologist, Frans De Waal, from the same town as Bosch, has written about empathy and its evolution in animals. (A good book on the theme is “Primates and Philosophers” by Frans De Waal).

However, the subject of this small work can be narrowed down to… joy.

Den Bosch Boy, cm.94x75x25, Bronze, 2012