Description by the artist
Lucky charm Necklace for the home of Occhi ra muntagna (Sicilian for eyes of the Etna mountain) collection. Living under a volcano has led me to choose “living” materials such as glass, lava stone and metals and blend them into the alchemy of the whole, to represent the emotions and feelings that nourish the landscapes of the soul. Etna, our beloved “muntagna” (Sicilian for mountain ), looks at us and we Sicilians look at it even when it is not seen. Nature that incorporates colors and shapes and that gives itself back to the eyes and heart of those who look at it, recognizing themselves as part of it. Fusion of glass, lava stone (“occhio di pernice”) and metals. Patent for invention n 01297068.
The artwork in the Sicilian culture
Etna, the highest volcano in Europe (3300 meters above sea level), imperiously dominates the eastern part of Sicily, but it is so huge that it can be seen up to hundreds of kilometers away. Men of all ages have climbed to the top starting with the philosopher Empedocle from Agrigento (V B.C.) who, according to legend, ended his life by throwing himself into it. The toponym (Aitna) seems to derive from some word whose etymology, leads back to the meaning “I burn”. For the Arabs of Sicily (IX-XI century) it was a mountain twice as high and they called it Mons (mount) Gebel (mountain), twice a mountain; and until the recent past (but also today) the Sicilians called it Mongibello. But its Sicilian name par excellence is: “a muntagna”. It has given work to the nivalori (that they collected the snow, they preserved it in the caves of the volcano and then they sold it in the villages), to the coalmen, to the gatherers of the Ginestra (excellent for the bakers).
Acis and Galatea is one of the most beautiful legends of Sicily. It takes place near the volcano Etna where the one-eyed giant Polyphemus lives (the one who was blinded by Ulysses). He is in love with the nymph Galatea who in turn is in love with the Etnean shepherd boy Acis. Furious with jealousy, the giant throws huge boulders (the current Faraglioni of Acitrezza) against the shepherd boy, killing him. Moved to compassion the gods transformed Acis into river so that he could join the nymph Galatea.
(photo) Aci e Galatea Antoine Jean Gros, 1833