Pygmalion and Galatea: A Myth of Personal Transformation

The myth of Pygmalion is an ancient Greek tale about a talented sculptor who falls in love with the statue of the woman he has created. By praying to the goddess of love, Aphrodite, Pygmalion sees his statue come to life, which profoundly transforms him. In this article, we explore the story of Pygmalion, his personal transformation and the continuing significance of this myth for our society.

The story of Pygmalion

Pygmalion's life before the creation of Galatea

Pygmalion was a renowned sculptor from Cyprus. He had great admiration for female beauty, but found living women too imperfect for his art. So he decided to stop loving them. However, his passion for sculpture never left him. He continued to sculpt women, one after another, working tirelessly, until he created a sculpture he called Galatea.

The creation of Galatea

Galatea was the most beautiful, perfect and realistic sculpture Pygmalion had ever created. He had invested so much of his time, passion and talent in this sculpture that it seemed to be alive. The proportions were perfect, the beauty pure. Pygmalion was captivated by Galatea, and never wanted to display her publicly, for he feared that others would see her as nothing more than a mere object.

Pygmalion's love for Galatea

He loved Galatea more than anything else on earth. He gave her a name, a body, a beauty, and shaped his world around her. He spent all his time contemplating his creation, even when his friends visited, and she was his only company.

Pygmalion's transformation

Pygmalion's prayers to Aphrodite

As Pygmalion loved his sculpture more than anything, he sought a way to bring it to life. He prayed to Aphrodite, the goddess of love and beauty, to grant him a woman who would resemble him as closely as possible. Aphrodite accepted his request and sympathized with him. She transformed Galatea into a living being, giving her life and making her more beautiful than ever.

Galatea's transformation into a living being

As soon as Galatea became a living being, Pygmalion was seized by the realization that the love he felt for her was not just an artistic passion, but a true love. Galatea was a living woman, who breathed, who spoke, who loved and who was loved. He was no longer alone and could share his existence with a loved one. As for Galatea, she was madly in love with Pygmalion and completely devoted to him.

Pygmalion's transformation into a lover and father

Pygmalion became a new man. He flourished as a lover, a husband, and now, a father. He had a new reason to live. He decided to spend all his time with Galatea, to help her grow, to protect her and to share with her all the wonders and joys that love could bring. Galatea's transformation had also transformed Pygmalion, who had discovered a new essence within himself, a deeper, happier essence.

The meaning of the Pygmalion myth

Pygmalion as representative of the artistic ideal

The story of Pygmalion represents a vision of ideal art, but also shows how perfection can become problematic. As a sculptor, Pygmalion created a work of art that was so perfect that it made him lose interest in other forms of beauty in the world. This obsession can be negative, as it can make us forget the imperfections that are the object of our veneration, or lead us to seek perfection at all costs, which can be detrimental to our own mental health.

Pygmalion as a representative of ideal love

The myth of Pygmalion also shows us how love can change a person and create an entirely new world. Love can give a new direction to our lives, allowing us to flourish and strengthen the bonds of our relationships. Pygmalion found love with a statue he had created with his own hands, an art form that had given him life.

Pygmalion as a metaphor for personal transformation

The myth of Pygmalion can be interpreted as a metaphor for personal transformation, the metamorphosis of a person who detaches himself from his ego, to become a better, more compassionate person. Pygmalion realized that his work of art had a transformative power over him. His quest for artistic perfection had become more than just an exercise in aesthetics. It opened the door to a love that was more valuable than he had imagined, a love that had transformed him.


The myth of Pygmalion is a timeless, universal myth that remains inseparable from imagination and art. It has inspired writers, artists, philosophers and researchers. By using storytelling tools such as creative imagination, we can discover his deep and metaphorical meaning, which helps us to better understand the human condition. Pygmalion is a symbol of personal transformation that reminds us that we can achieve the impossible and change for the better if we have the desire and passion.