Louise Bourgeois: Sculptors & Spiders

Louise Bourgeois: Sculptors & Spiders
Isabel del Rio

Louise Bourgeois: Sculptors & Spiders

Yesterday was a dramatic day. I got up tired (as always), trying to take a coffee to awaken after some different nightmares: any coffee at home, bad luck! I really hate this kind of things which break my little habits. I tried to dress quickly but, well, my hair was covering my left eye and that disturbed me, so much when some of those hairs persisted in entering into my poor asleep eye. Finally, I went in front of a mirror to take the stupid hairs out (shouts…, more shouts). A horrible spider, of tiny body but long legs, was on it and my image, with my face cover by such animal, caused me fear (more shouts).

Louise Bourgeois, Spider Maman

Louise Bourgeois, Spider Maman

My old mother came to see her crazy daughter and finished quarreling me, as when I was a little girl, ‘you are hysterical.’ Now, I usually see my mother, with so many illnesses, as a tender person and I really like to protect her. But yesterday, when she quarreled me, I saw her as years ago, wanting me in prison, my eye already was into the jail built by the spider legs.

It’s a good metaphor, I thought later, and way to work I remember Louise Bourgeois and her obsession by spiders. I saw her fantastic giant sculpture in the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao last summer. That spider with the belly full of eggs, as a mother, moving its elastic legs with proud so everybody could see its pregnancy (a mother used to be proud) but, made of bronze, the spider Maman can be hard (with its babies and with everyone who tries to touch them, to enter into its maternal home which can be a jail too.

Louise Bourgeois (1911-2010) lived with these feelings all of her life. Loving and detesting her mother, her main subject. She compared her (cheated by her father) with a laborious spider knitting for her children, but a spider frightens us. Why?

To honor Louise Bourgeois sculptures.

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