To Malherbe 1975

Made of rose-colored onyx in the shape of an open book with an egg in the center and inscribed with the french text "L’espace d’un matin" (The span of a morning).

Mirella Bentivoglio, To Malherbe, 1975; Gift of the Artist

To Malherbe (À Malherbe) is dedicated to the French renaissance poet François de Malherbe, whose famous poem, “Consolation á M. Du Périer” deals with the death of Du Périer’s young daughter Marguerite. The brevity of her life is compared to that of a rose: “Et rose elle a vécu ce que vivent les roses/ L’espace d’un matin” (A rose, she has lived as long as roses live/The span of a morning).

The book, realized in rose-colored onyx, extends the allusion to the color of dawn and a brief life, of which the only memory is its early and most beautiful phase.

National Museum of Women in the Arts