Art. Marble, 9,022 ft.
Second Century, year
220 to 190 B.C.
The weakening of
Athens and other Greek cities' because of the Macedonian domination, and
Alexander's conquests, which helped to contact other civilization centers,
broke the relationship between the individual and the political and
religious system of Greece, supporting all tendencies to personal diversity.
This "personalism", not to be considered decadent, is what defines the
so-called "Hellenistic" age. One of the new metropolis, Rhodes, keeps its
Greek city spirit, no matter its cosmopolitanism and its Asian geographic
It was probably an
unknown sculptor from Rhodes who created this Hellenistic, worldwide-known
masterpiece. This thrilling figure leads us to remember Lisipo's classicism,
for its noble harmony, at the same time very baroque, given its pathos and
attitude's dynamism, and its rich clothes.
In order to
emphasize its original style, the statue was placed upon a ledge, over the
theater, standing out above the Sanctuary of Cabiros and the sea. The
landscape strengthened this idealistic vision of Hellenism even more,
clearly showing Alexander's civilizing efforts, later stopped by the Roman
conquest and its successors' rivalry. It's also true that it could have been
also influenced by Pergamum.
tension, almost 10 feet high, its bold dynamism and tumultuous clothes
pushed by the wind make it a realistic vision; on the other hand, the
sculpture seems to have been made in order to dominate a big natural and
architectural area. The masterpiece, that surely commemorated the victory of
the Rhodian fleet over Antioco III, was rebuilt with some fragments found in
1863 in Samotracia Island by French consul Charles Champoineau, and nowadays
part of the Louvre Museum.
In the first
manifesto of Futurism, published in Le Fígaro on February 22 1909, Italian
poet Marinetti says: "We assure that the magnificence of the world gets
richer with new beauty; the beauty of speed. A racing car decorated with its
thick tubes, similar to serpents with explosive halitus...a noisy
automobile, that seems to be running over a shrapnel, is more beautiful than
the Victory of Samotracia".