The Reconciliation of Marie de Medici and Her Son, Peter Paul Rubens (1621).
No one before Bernini had managed to make marble so carnal. In his nimble hands it would flatter and stream, quiver and sweat. His figures weep and shout, their torses twist and run, and arch themselves in spasms of intense sensation. He could, like an alchemist, change one material into another - marble into trees, leaves, hair, and, of course, flesh.
- Simon Schama’s Power of Art. Bernini
The kiss of death.
This astonishing sculpture forms part of Barcelona’s Poblenou Cemetery. The Kiss of Death (El Petó de la Mort in Catalan and El beso de la muerte in Spanish) dates back to 1930. A winged skeleton bestows a kiss on the lips of a handsome young man: is it ecstasy on his face or resignation? Little wonder the sculpture elicits strong and varying responses from whoever gazes upon it.