Antinous was (probably) Hadrian’s boy toy, and was basically considered to be the hottest thing to have ever graced the planet. He has the third most surviving representations of any historical figure ever (after Augustus and Hadrian).
Antinous died in an ‘accident’ on the Nile, although some sources say that he was actually sacrificed to the gods by Hadrian because of his beauty. After his death, Antinous was deified. Because he was sexy.
Oh la la.
You don’t have to be there at the creation of the world to be a god. Deification is a common process, and happened more than once within the reaches of the Roman Empire, though it can also be seen in the other corners of the world.
The Norse poets eventually added Bragi to the pantheon of gods, who was a renowned Skald in his own day, and certain generals and warriors in China and Japan were regarded as powerful spirits, and received prayers and sacrifices from Shinto and Buddhist practitioners. Deification (the process of turning worshipping/treating someone as a god) is all over the place, and there are even some contemporary examples.
Ever been to the Lincoln Memorial? That big ol’ statue of Honest Abe? The statue of him on that mighty throne (if that’s not “King” imagery, I don’t know what is) is very Jupiter-esque, no? That could absolutely be considered deification, and ditto for the founding fathers of the USA. Franklin, Washington and the gang are held in such high esteem that they are seen by many as protective Patron Saints of America, and receive prayers and questions from the citizenry in times of trial.
DAVID WITH THE HEAD OF GOLIATH familiarities with ANDRÉ DURAND - FRA’ CARLO SALVA LA TESTA DI ULISSE
Whilst reading this text that the maestro has prepared for his upcoming catalogue I researched what he mentioned about David and Goliath and found the above images.
“In October 2010, during his first visit to the villa of Tiberius and the National Museum in Sperlonga, Maestro André Durand was intrigued by the story of the monks who settled there around the sixth century and destroyed the decoration, in particular the statues that were in the Grotto of Tiberius. Of the nude female torso of Scylla there was nothing left. It had been shattered to smithereens. The monks found the great statue of the drunken Polythemus almost as offensive as the female nude. However, it had been shattered less violently into the many recognizable fragments that survive today like the Cyclops’ magnificent right hand and his left leg and hairy foot.
Imagining that all the monks could not be insensitive to the beauty of the statues, Durand has conceived an image, reminiscent of the iconography of the Davids and Goliaths in Italian 15th to 18th century painting and sculpture: a young monk, groping in the grotto basin to salvage an important fragment of sculpture, the head of Ulysses, a consummate masterpiece of Hellenistic art. With the wisdom of youth, Durand’s young monk knows that the beauty of art even of pagan subjects, is a manifestation of God.”
André has started work on a third painting at the Museo Archeologico Nazoinale di Sperlonga. The picture is titled BROTHER CARLO RESCUING THE HEAD OF ODYSSEUS or FRA’ CARLO SALVA LA TESTA DI ULISSE in Italian.
The Maestro is currently working hard to complete the painting so that it can be exhibited at the Villa Adriana in Tivoli where it will not only represent André’s genius but also the importance of Sperlonga’s treasures.
As you can notice from the second Image André as started a new picture. It is titled BROTHER CARLO RESCUING THE HEAD OF ODYSSEUS or FRA’ CARLO SALVA LA TESTA DI ULISSE and was blocked in on Sunday. (20/02/2011) I am working on a film in Final Cut about its progress.