Rodin was fascinated with the broken nose. l'Homme au nez casse (the
left stature) was regarded by Rodin as his first important piece.
He related that the head had a wonderful shape, beautiful in its own
way. It was "stamped with a nobleness of expression that looked
so much the more striking for its contrast with the ruin to which
it was attached." He completed several versions of this piece.
The deformed nose or accentuation of nasal features can be seen in
many Rodin pieces.
The left sculpture represents a severely deformed nose. There is
a collapsed dorsum and the nasal bones are displaced. Click on the
left 2 pictures to see computer "reconstructive surgery"
of this deformity.
The dorsum (front part of the nose) has collapsed. Dorsal collapse
of a broken nose can occur with an untreated septal hematoma (blood
clot that separates the mucosal lining from the cartilage of the wall
that separates the nostrils). A septal hematoma interferes with the
blood supply of the cartilage which then can result in lost support
for the nose over several months. Severe trauma can also disrupt the
cartilages as well as bones.
The nasal bones seem to have been displaced. Such deformity is best
treated before the bones have healed in bad position. (Click
here to see a clinical case with a similar boney deformity and reduction).
After healing in such malposition, the bones would need to be carefully
cut to help move them back into position. This operation is called
a rhinoplasty. Click on the left images to see a computer simulated
People with severe nasal deformity often have the nasal passages
obstructed. The bent nasal bones and cartilages can mechanically block
air flow. Such patient breath through their mouths. Notice how the
statue's lips are parted. The septum is the wall that divides the
two nasal passages. A septoplasty or septal resection (removing part
of the septum) can improve the breathing obstruction.
See an actual case of dorsal hump reduction
and explore what rhinoplasty has to offer.
Learn about nasal fractures in Nasal
fractures I and Nasal