Standing Ulysses – Giacomo Manzù
Out of the two artworks at the hotel, the Standing Ulysses deserves some special attention. Manzù himself tells of his admiration for the Greek character: “Ulysses, the wandering poet, unaware of material possessions and far away from body lust, used to roam at sea and on land like clouds moved by the wind, excited by the Mediterranean air and supported by the daily triumph of courage, challenge and fight; he was in love with the world and its inhabitants, as if he tried to reach and win them and have them finally with himself … “ and again: “I have always been fascinated by Ulysses because of his strength, his determination and his intelligence that let him beat any adversity”.
Better than anybody else Manzù can explain his art in general: “performing my art is like uttering my words, portraying my own voice, meeting the dead of the “Spanish flu” and encountering nature at the time I was between ten and fourteen. You can see the chair, which is the only inheritance of my family; the cardinals, a memory of my childhood; the Christ of mankind who was my first reason of consolation and later of discouragement and disappointment; the hanged partisan whom I saw; the death of the innocent victims of the war; Inge, who brought love into my life and my art; Lenin whom I saw dead; Paup John and my children Giulia and Mileto who live with me; you can also see the “folds” which I feel tormented by, and finally, all the sacrifices and efforts that live with my hopes”.