Sculpture Stands in Tribute to Maternal Love, Forgiveness
The Fetzer Global Gathering in Assisi, Italy was in town less than a week, but artist and Fetzer advisor Dimitris Alithinos created a lasting reminder in the form of a marble sculpture initially displayed in the city's Piazza del Comune.
Sculpted in Carrara marble, the piece expresses an unconditional maternal love, full of hope for the future and forgiveness for the past, devoted not to an individual life coming into being, but to a collectivity, humankind.
“When I see a pregnant woman, in the ugliness and harshness of this world, I think that in order to make the decision to bring a child in this world, she has probably forgiven humanity for all its sins, for all its cruelty, for all its crimes against the planet and ultimately against itself,” Alithinos states.
The sculpture, with its globe abdomen and tender pose, evokes the maternal body as metaphorical place for care and responsibility toward all beings, including the living entity that is our planet.
The drapery at the statue’s base echoes the iconic representation of the devotional subject of the grieving mother Mary supporting the body of her dead son: here the artist intentionally reverses loss and despair to a celebration of the unconditional love of motherhood, full of hope for the future and forgiveness for the past.
Alithinos, an advisor to the Fetzer Institute, is a major figure in the conceptual art movement. He has devoted his career to the values of compassion, cultural respect and service to communities around the world.
This is a project of the Fetzer Advisory Council on the Arts and curator Franca Di Valerio.