Copyright 2011

Lucia—Bloody Nightie (Lucia di Lammermoor, Donizetti)

Lucia Ashton’s gradual descent into madness culminates in the tour de force “Mad Scene,” in which Lucia appears before her horrified wedding guests in a nightgown stained with the blood of the husband she has just killed. In?the sculpture, Lucia’s bloodied gown—a garment staple of opera costume collections—assumes a trance-like stillness; the fabric has a dull patina, like the weathered marble of a Hellenistic statue, which seems fitting, since her fate was carved by others.

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