Segantini - Le Cattive Madre 1894
Type of Spiritual Experience
There are references in a number of scholarly works to ideas of the 'bad mother' that Segantini used. Cattive here means 'bad'.
Segantini was inspired by Nirvana, a poem written by the 12th century monk Luigi Illica in imitation of the Indian text Panghiavahli. Illica's poem contained the phrase 'la Mala Madre', but the 'Bad Mother' in Indian cosmology refers to Mother and Father symbolism and the two roles of the Mother as Creator and Destroyer - the one responsible for Life and Death.
Given his wife's tuberculosis and his mother and father's early deaths, Segantini would have been all too aware of the dual nature of the Mother. Left: Detail
A description of the experience