Roman women were at once the object of love and of fear, and of desire and scorn. Whether respectable matrons, harlots, priestesses or empresses, they were considered inferior under the law. However, despite this subordinate role, basically as wives and mothers, women occupied a prominent position in Roman society compared to other ancient civilisations.
Women’s status enjoyed a certain evolution in Rome, an advance that was perceptible in both customs and general outlook. Through 178 everyday objects used to decorate Roman villas, the exhibition Women of Rome. Seductive, Maternal, Excessive illustrates this status, which afforded certain privileges, achieved through and translated into different representations reflected in mythology, religion and the vis materna, as well as in the allegory of seduction and excess.
The exhibition, produced as a result of an agreement between ”la Caixa” Foundation and the Louvre Museum for the joint organisation of major projects like this one, features many outstanding works, including a series of murals from Pompeii and others restored especially to go on show at CaixaForum, such as the terracotta reliefs known as "campana tiles".
Women of Rome. Seductive, Maternal, Excessive. Collections of the Louvre Museum. CaixaForum Madrid (Paseo del Prado, 36). Dates: from 4 November 2015 to 14 February 2016.