Rheinhold Monkey with Skull, Cycladic Idols, Egyptian Scarab

Posted by Nina Christensen on

On Mondays we visit the photo booth with new products from our collection. This week we are spotlighting Rheinhold's Monkey with Skull (RHE01, RHE03), Cycladic Idols, (CYC01, CYC02) and a new scarab (EG08). 


The original bronze sculpture Monkey with Skull or also known as Philosophizing Monkey attracted a great deal of attention at the Berlin Art Exhibition in 1893. It was Rheinhold's first sculpture as a professional sculptor and was an immediate commercial success. The Berlin bronze foundry H. Gladenbeck & Sohn marketed various versions of the adorable monkey. A copy even graced Nikolai Lenin's desk at the Kremlin from 1922 onwards. One of the books the monkey is seated on bears the Biblical quote: Eritis Sicut Deus (Genesis III, 5). 'Thou shalt be as God' which paraphrases the words the serpent spoke to Eve to entice her to taste the apple. Another of the books has the name Darwin, presumably referencing the legendary study by Charles Darwin "On the Origins of Species".


This charming small reproduction of a female form has aspects of modern design even though it dates back thousands of year to an early Greek culture in the Cyclades islands of Greece. This type of sculpture is called a Cycladic Idol because many buried statues like this have been found in grave sites in the Cycladic Islands and are believed to be some sort of a devotional artifact.


scarab in palm of handThe scarab was by far the most popular amulet in ancient Egypt. It is shaped like the holy dung beetle which rolls a ball of dung in front of it just as the sun god Ra rolls along the firmament every day. Moreover, the larvae transform into beetles in the same way that the soul and body change appearance.

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