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Sculptures in Paradise

The monumental bronze sculptures by Igor Mitoraj, one of the world-renowned sculptors, lying in the courtyard of the castle in Verona took my breath away. I have seen before the work of this talented Polish sculptor in Cracow, but somehow here in the ornate castle, in the medieval surroundings, they resonated with me the strongest. Despite studying painting at Cracow School of Art, foremost he is a sculptor. In his studio in Pietrasanta in Italy, he worked with terracotta, bronze and marble. Surely he is influenced heavily by the classical examples all around Bella Italia, as many mythological figures are represented in his art, however there is a strong modern twist in them as well – almost all of his pieces are somehow damaged, fragmented or crossed with some very imaginative intrusions. Despite the heads or limbs cut off, his sculptures are not sad or depressing, there is certain nostalgia about them, associated more with the representation of the damage of the classical art through centuries, but somehow the imperfect shapes are truly perfect. The beauty radiating from them made me smile with this quiet happy satisfaction.  Bold but lyrical, dead but very much alive, titanic but welcoming, that’s how I would describe them.

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