Piazza della Signoria (Florence, Italy)

A replica of Michelangelo's David
A replica of Michelangelo’s David

Out in a public space in Florence are sculptures that are considered to be masterpieces. I had a hard time wrapping my head around the openness and public trust. It was surprising to find a body double of one of the great works of Renaissance art.

Michelangelo’s David originally appeared in the square of the Palazzo Vecchio, but because of its artistic importance, the statue was moved to its current location at the Accademia. In its place is a replica of the famous statue.

Nearby is the Loggia dei Lanzi, a building consisting of beautifully constructed, wide open arches, under which are sheltered other sculptural masterpieces. One of them is Benvenuto Cellini’s Perseus with the Head of Medusa, a work in bronze that consumed ten years of the artist’s life.

Cellini’s Perseus with the Head of Medusa

One of the most impressive pieces artistically is Giambologna’s Rape of the Sabine Women, a recreation of the abduction legend of Sabine women by the mostly male founders of Rome. It was carved out of a single block of marble in a spiral motif that was meant to be appreciated from all sides.

Giambologna’s Rape of the Sabine Women

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