Modern sculpture at Circus Maximus raises eyebrows

Art Tribune criticises Rome sculpture

A large brightly-coloured piece of sculpture has appeared recently at the Circus Maximus in Rome, baffling many passersby.

The two-sided sculpture is the work of artist Francesco Visalli from the Prenestino area of Rome. The piece is entitled Homage to Mondriaan and features 3-D renderings of 22 geometric shapes by Dutch artist Piet Mondrian.

The work is sited between the Aventine and the Circus Maximus, opposite the Palatine, and is mounted on a base of fake ivy. Visalli's sculpture was the subject of a scathing review by the Art Tribune, Italy's respected newspaper and website, on 27 January.

The newspaper questioned how a relatively obscure artist managed to have his work sited in such a prized location without any apparent public tendering process. It argued that to bypass such competition, the artist would have to be of international repute and have exhibited in some of the world's greatest art museums.

Visalli's latest exhibition took place in the grounds of Rainbow Magicland, the theme park south of Rome.