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Ceres Goddess. Statues of Málaga


Ceres, goddess of agriculture, harvest, and fertility




Ceres, the goddess of agriculture, is often portrayed with symbols such as the sceptre and a sheaf of grain, hence the word cereal. Her Greek counterpart is Demeter. The Romans adopted the Goddess Ceres in 496 BC during a devastating famine, when the Sibylline Books advised the adoption of her Greek equivalent, Demeter, along with Persephone and Iacchus (a mediator between the Eleusinian goddesses and Dionysus). The Goddess Ceres was personified and honoured by women with secret rituals during the Ambarvalia festival, celebrated in May with processions in which Roman women wore men's white robes, and men were mere spectators. Those in mourning were not allowed to take part in these festivities, which is why they were not held the year of the Battle of Cannae.



Ceres is usually depicted as a beautiful woman of majestic stature and coloured complexion, with a languid gaze and blonde hair falling dishevelled over her shoulders. She's also portrayed holding a sheaf of grain in her right hand and a lit torch in her left. Here she holds a torch, but it seems to be extinguished.





The author, Adrían Risueño

The Málaga artist, Adrián Risueño Gallardo, was born in Málaga in 1896 and from a very young age aspired to become a sculptor. He began his training at the Málaga School of Fine Arts and in 1924, he was granted a scholarship by the Málaga City Council to complete his studies in Madrid. Years later, he was chosen to sculpt the bust of D. José Gálvez that adorns the austere monument that stands, worn by the years and the elements, next to Málaga Cathedral. The inscription reads: “To Doctor Gálvez Ginachero, a distinguished Málaga resident who dedicated his life to the service of Spain, Science, and Christian Charity. May, 1944."



When the Casa de la Cultura (House of Culture) was built on Alcazabilla street, a small garden was also constructed that served as a link between the House of Culture and the entrance to the Alcazaba. In this garden, as ornamental elements, two classical-inspired statues were placed, the work of the great sculptor Adrián Risueño. Upon the demolition of the House of Culture, these statues were removed and have recently been restored.



NOTE: Do not confuse this statue with the other statue of the Goddess Ceres located in the Park of Málaga, which is credited to José Vílchez. It was once situated in the Alameda Principal when it was a pedestrian zone.



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