Hand Holding an Egg, with a Snake Wrapped Around Wrist - Martha Todd


In the poem written to accompany his painting the Metamorphosis of Narcissus, Salvador Dalí wrote,

‘if a man has a bulb in his head, it might break out into a flower at any minute, Narcissus!’

Earlier in the poem, Dalí had compared a ‘bulb in the head’ to the psychoanalytic notion of a ‘complex’. The flower which appears from the bulb (the egg in Dalí’s painting, which is gently balanced between the artist’s fingers) represents the artwork breaking out of the complex.

This replica of a bronze piece from Freud’s collection bears a remarkable similarity to the artist’s hand in Dalí’s painting, while the snake coiled around the wrist and running up the thumb seems to prefigure the psychoanalytic notion that the artist must somehow plumb the depths of their own unconscious sexual fantasies in the act of artistic creation.

Martha Todd RCA MA is an artist working from Studio Manifold in East London. Her work is often conceptual but she also enjoys sculpting figurative forms, both human and animal. She makes work both for exhibitions and on commission, and is currently researching for her PhD in sculptural ceramics at the University for the Creative Arts.

Height: 13cm

Base diameter: 4.5cm

All busts are individually made and will vary slightly.

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