During my recent workshop in Italy, we were able to do the three-day add-on in Florence which turned out to be our favorite time of the entire trip.
Florence (Italian: Firenze) is the capital city of the Italian region of Tuscany and of the province of Florence. It is the most populous city in Tuscany, with approximately 370,000 inhabitants, expanding to over 1.5 million in the metropolitan area.
The statue of three intertwined figures that is the center of my painting is called The Rape of the Sabine Women (Latin: Sabinae raptae). It depicts an episode in the legendary history of Rome, traditionally dated to 750 BC, in which the first generation of Roman men acquired wives for themselves from the neighboring Sabine families. The English word rape is a conventional translation of the Latin “raptio”, which in this context means “abduction” rather than its prevalent modern meaning in English language of sexual violation.
I was just as captivated with this beautiful sculpture as the figures I made up for my painting! This is not the original. Just like the statue of David on the Piazza della Signoria, this Rape of the Sabine Women is a replica of the real thing, the real sculpture being situated in the Galleria degli Uffizi, safely away from the elements and pollution.
Upon closer inspection, you will see that I kept the background to a minimum, really just focusing on the shape of the statue and the young men passing by. I love how they all look up while passing by! Almost like all conversation has temporary been halted while they’ve been near this magnificent sculpture. You may ask, “Did it really happen like this?” …Well, it may have happened just like that; I like to think that even young people could be captivated by the power of this eternal piece of art.