Xicu Cabanyes’ Pregnant Woman and the Can Ginebreda Forest
Pregnant Woman, concrete (copyright 1991, Xicu Cabanyes. All Rights Reserved.)
Deep in a forest of Catalunya, numerous sculptures and other artworks stand, scattered on paths, beneath trees, rocks and other natural growths. The forest, Can Ginebrada Forest, is also referred to as “Xicu’s Forest” because Xicu Cabanyes, a Catalan artist, is responsible for the creation of this enchanted artistic space. Some of the artist’s sculptures depict the female body, and the one featured here shows an impressive woman who is full in her pregnancy. On a hidden path of the forest, Xicu’s Pregnant Woman stands still, holding her belly with one hand, her head tilted upwards towards the sky, her eyes closed. Flanked by trees on each side, the pregnant woman’s form is sturdy, solidly supporting the weight of her round belly. Her full breasts rest above her belly, while the crease of her vulva swells from below. With her other arm resting peacefully at her side, the pregnant woman’s face is serene, the muscles of her cheeks and forehead relaxed. As if stopping her motion to take in a breath of the cool, fresh air of the forest around her, the pregnant woman appears calm and at ease, while powerful and robust at the same time.
For any pregnant women, a sacred or peaceful place in which she may meditate upon the child within her is often conducive to a more peaceful birth experience. Bonding with the baby begins before birth, and connections made with the baby in utero are helpful to the woman as she imagines the birth of that child. Xicu’s sculpture of the pregnant woman represents a meditative woman, but the artwork can also be used as a meditative object to be used by other pregnant women. In looking at the serenity of the pregnant woman’s form, which rests quietly in the forest, the viewer breathes easier, filling her own diaphragm with relaxation. The nude sculpture reminds the viewer of ho w solid and strong can be the body of a pregnant woman.
More of Cabanyes’ work may be seen on the Can Ginebreda website.