Massimo Righini

My Florentine family has a tradition of artistic activities, and in the late fifties I taught myself to carve stones from local river beds. After finishing medical school and surgical training, I came to the U.S. and for forty years had little time to sculpt.

When I retired in1998, I started stone carving again. I use stone to tell tales about myths, fables, history and recent events, always with a satirical or skeptical twist. I imitate the anonymous medieval sculptors who carved sacred histories on the walls of ancient cathedrals. But instead of their unyielding faith in a world of the spirit, I bring the critical and questioning mind of a modern man rooted in a world of empirical reality. I believe that art is ultimately a form of communication between humans, often on an emotional level and sometimes on a rational one.

What I enjoy about carving is that I start with an idea and sculpt directly from a block of stone, without maquettes or drawings, using only hand tools. I find that the feedback between artist and artwork can be best appreciated through working by hand. Stones are all different–each one has its peculiar texture and finish. I stop once it “looks and feels” right.

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