Italian Artist Gives Classical Sculptures Criminal Tattoos
Italian artist Fabio Viale creates familiar classical marble sculptures with an unexpected contemporary twist. He takes a Greek torso, the arm of Michelangelo’s David and a famous Roman sculpture, and decorates them with realistic tattoos.
“It’s fantastic the way he works with marble, a traditional and almost holy material,” says Pietro Gagliardi, Fabio Viale’s art dealer. “He interprets the marble in such a way that something modern and contemporary comes out of it.”
Fabio Viale started working with marble at the age of 16 and never stopped. “I’m still fascinated by it. The material allows me to create the shapes that I envision. There’s nothing I can’t do with it.”
In Viale’s hands, white marble sculptures traditionally associated with purity and nobility, get ornamented with symbols inspired by the body art of Japanese and Russian criminals. We see Madonnas, skulls, guns and other secretive designs that come from the complex code of the prisoner community.
That’s how with Viale’s signature touch, the sculptured classical bodies considered to be ‘perfect’ get a serious touch of badassery, making us reconsider the way classical art relates to current realities.