We’ve seen James Franco take part in nearly every corner of the art world, from his NSFW videos for his indie rock band, Daddy, to his newfound love of painting. And now, drawing inspiration from the iconic ceramics produced in Glazed: The Legacy of the Della Robbia, Franco has teamed up with Sotheby’s London as a part of their Artist Response series, to debut his sensual take on sculptures from the Italian Renaissance.
Rounding out at 4 minutes, this visual response features 19 sculptures inspired by the famous Della Robbia family, all of which allude to secular figures like the Virgin Mary.
“For centuries, sculpture has been used decoratively and as iconography,” Franco said. “The Della Robbia family created sculptures that take on both of those roles. I was immediately struck by the vibrancy and shine of the glaze of the Della Robbia sculptures in this show, especially the human forms frozen in time as icons. To mimic and modernize these sculptures, I wanted to create living icons emphasizing the glazing process.”
The short features each figure being slowly coated in a thick, clear liquid, similar to the process in which most ceramic sculptures go through: “I filmed them in slow motion so the viewer relishes in the passage of time and can imagine the tangible feeling of the liquid covering each living sculpture,” he said.
Watch the full film, below.