Posted 8 years ago
This is a beautiful sculptor, measuring 13 h x 19 w x 4 1/2 deep, the item was located in New York City's South Bronx section of the Third Avenue Corridor.
The item is signed Robazza on the front center with a 925 mark and a makers mark on the left bottom.
There is also a paper label on the back (written in Italian) ;
La Sterling Europea
garantisce che la presente opera in argento 925/000 e state
realizzata da Maestri artigiani, nei propri laboratori di Pollenza (MC).
Translation: The European Sterling ensures that the present work is in silver 925/000 and been made by master craftsmen, in their own laboratories in Pollenza (MC).
It appears to be sterling and weighs about 35 to 40 lbs.
He was born in 2nd March 1934 in the working class district of “Consolazione”, in the centre of old Rome, between the district of “Anagrafe” and “Trastevere”. Since childhood he had shown a clear leaning towards drawing and a natural talent in modelling clay which he used to get from the river bank. However, soon these natural talent became essential for his survival and that of his mother His father, captured by the Germans, was killed whilst trying to escape. Soon afterwards Benedetto lost his brother too and so became, in sprite of being just a baby himself, the head of the family. In his hands, which were already capable of creating things, he found the only way to make ends meet, even if poorly. He made figures out of clay (pupazzi as they are called in Rome) for the cribs which are popularly used to decorate peoples homes at Christmas, and sold them in “Piazza Navona”. From this he made a little money which he proudly took home. He would never have imagined then that these rough, little sculptures would be the beginning of his destiny as an artist.
Then, to earn more, he began to paint small landscapes and some portraits where he learnt to use colour.
He learnt to play music, to dance and he became a little personality in that district, where every one loved him for his generosity to others lest fortunate than himself. He felt alone and so joined the Navy. There, they realised how strong he was and they introduced him to the sport of boxing.
As usual he was successful and reached the Italian championships.
When he finished his service, life, once more, changed completely.
With little money he went to Belgium where he worked in a precious stone workshop which gave him the idea of attending a school of geology at which he got a diploma. It was an experience that was to be very useful to him later for knowing about different stone and marble when he could dedicate himself totally to sculpture and would also master painting techniques.
After Belgium, Robazza’s story is rich in foreign countries where he held exhibitions: mainly Germany and then the United States of America. The most prestigious was the exhibition held in the capitol of Albany, the capital of New York state. In the city of New York, where Robazza was greatly admired, there is even a gallery reserved for his works, the “Benedetto Gallery”.
Famous portrait painter and in grat demand among the politicians, people in finance, the military, ecclesiastical and showbusiness world, Robazza had the
honour of being invited to portray President Regan whose bust is displayed in the White House in the Theodore Rooswelt room (Rooswelt won the Nobel prize for peace in 1906). Other who have sat for Robazza include King Bhumidol Rama IX and Queen Sirikit of Thailand whose sculptures in gold-plated bronze are displayed in the royal Palace in Bankok; and the President of Bavaria, Franz Joseph Strauss. He has also done portraits of Alcide de Gaspari, Sandro Perini, Aldo Moro and then, his greates priode, the two portraits of Pope John Paul II, one for his apartment in Vatican and the other in via Giovanni Paolo II in Termoli, where Robazza also erected a monument to Padre Pio on the street with the same name. And finally the two busts of General Carlo Alberto Dalla Chiesa and that of General Umberto Capuzzo. But we must also list at least his main works of the grat stars of yesterday and today: Rudolf Valentino, Marilyn Monroe, Frank Sinatra and, recently, Alberto Sordi represented in the clothes of an ancient Roman like the Emperor of Cinema.
Alongside his portraits are those works of art that make Robazza a witness for his time, the messenger of a brotherhood that the world of today scoffs at: the hight-relief, in via Carini in Palermo, which records the vile murder of general Dalla Chiesa, his wife and his driver: the obelisk “Roma 13 novembre 1982” situated in front of the Cristo Re Church in Viale Mazzini: the monument to the overseas dead in the cemetery at Bari, significantly called “Il Vortice” (the Vortex); a panel dedicated to the war dead of the Carabinieri; another on the massacre of via Fani with the face of Moro at the centre; and finally a bas-relief of great symbolic significance that seems to capture the whole meaning of Robazza’s work and has been defined as “the sculpture of pain and love”; it is a round bas-relief in marble called “Pace nel mondo” (“Peace in the world”, in which the Holy Spirit and the Pope join in an ecumenical embrace with the people of all continents.
There is, in the story of this artist, an initiative which assumes a really great significance for his spirit of universal brotherhood. In 1984, Robazza made, for the roman Centro della Sindologia, a bas-relief of the sacred Sindone, and at the same time, the Menorah, the chandelier whit seven arms, at the base of which the first two examples were destined for the Jewish museums of Rome and Jerusalem. Then Robazza had the idea of showing the Sindone and the Menorah together in the Esedra Gallery in Rome where other Catholic priests and members of the Israelian community of Rome attended. This extraordinary meeting in the name of art preceded that order, certainly more constructive one that subsequently took place between pope John Paul II and the chief Rabi Toaff.
Even the news, with its more painful and tragic happening, is present in Robazza’s work: the monument to Alfredino Rampi, the baby who died in the artesian werll in Vermicino; the genocide of the Cambodians in New York; the bust of the football player Luciano Re Cecconi, killed in a tragic accident and also a panel to exalt the Italian victory in the football championships.
The works which draw attention to the riches of Christmas tradition, merit a separate charapter in his vast production.
There are the big panels of “l’Apocalisse” in the church of Santa Maria della Vittoria in Caserta; the “Cristo risorto” in the chatedral of Altamura; a bronze crucifix for the Centro di Sindologia; and the recent Via Crucis which is still unfinished and will be placed in the santuario Quintiliolo di Tivoli.
It is impossible to calculate the number of works that Robazza has done on the theme of ideal beauty: part of this vision are his female nudes which have been very successful, especially in America, and his horses, running and rearing, full of the life that the artist has given them. However, for some time now something has changed in Robazza’s language. This artist, who is self made thanks to his natural talent, had already mastered extraordinarily well classic forms which have a greater affinity to his own sensitivity. But now, the maestro has brought his inspiration towards that which he calls “a second line” or a new language. In this way the original image has been twisted by formal invention, in a game of rhythm, of coils, of fullness and emptiness, and the result is to represented also certain experiences and researches into abstract art. This we can see, for example, in works like “Sirena”, “Arte e Musica”, “Estasi”, “Sagittario”.
We shouldn’t forget, to give a complete image of the rich artistic personality of the maestro, his intense painting season with works that usually have a single human figure as their subject, or the portrait, or scenes suggested bythe dramatic news of out times, or great mythological representations. Robazza’s art unveils at first sight the primary nature of the sculpture, by the plasticity of the images and the body of colour that crate great contrasts of shadow and light.
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