—Beginning of the World, Constantin Brancusi, 1920,
30 x 20 x 20 in., marble, nickel, silver, and stone,
Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas, Texas
From the Dallas Museum of Art website:
The reflection of the marble ovoid in the metal disc creates the illusion that it floats slightly above the rough stone base supporting these objects. In his sculptures, Constantin Brancusi relied on a relatively narrow range of identifiable objects—eggs, heads, birds, and columns—which he reduced to simple, abstract shapes. By paring down his forms and materials to their most basic essence, Brancusi sought to give expression to abstract spiritual themes and philosophical issues. The shapes in “Beginning of the World” are full of possible associations. For instance, the simple egg-shaped form might call to mind the purity of a precious newborn resting on a birthing dish.