Let’s save each and every crying Sabine woman!

This large and complex marble statue by the sculptor and architect Giambologna (Johannes of Boulogne) was completed between 1579 and 1583 when Giambologna was a student at the prestigious Accademia delle Arti del Disegno in Rome, under the patronage of Cosimo I de’ Medici. Widely considered his masterpiece, this work has been in the Loggia dei Lanzi since August 1582.
The statue, composed in the figura serpentina style, depicts three nude figures: a young man in the center who has seemingly taken a woman from a despairing older man below him. It is ostensibly based on the mythological episode of the Rape of the Sabine: Romulus, after having founded Rome, turns to neighboring populations to forge alliances and obtain women with whom to procreate and populate the new city; to the refusal of the neighbours he responds with deception organizing a great show to attract the inhabitants of the region and kidnap their women.
The sensuality of the bodies does fully contrast with the deepest desperation represented by two of the figures of this marble group. The use of color contrasts does even more accentuate this oxymoron.
In this work there is a profound link between the colors, the movement of the video footage and the original musical composition, that is, the contemporary reinterpretation of Schubert's An die Musik. The images and sounds follow each other slowly and in certain points overlap, creating a doubling of vision. Thus, the gaze of the observer passes from observing a scene of kidnapping to being himself kidnapped within an atmosphere of almost mystical and hallucinatory contemplation.

Experience watching to this statue listening to the digital interpretation of An die Musik from Schubert.
Voice: Maria Katharina Rauchenberger
Sound Designer: Roberto Prezioso

PlaceFlorence, Loggia dei Lanzi, Piazza della SignoriaTechniqueDigital Video colour filteredYear2022

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