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102538 | FINLAND & ITALY. Michelangelo 3-piece bronze Medal.

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    102538  |  FINLAND & ITALY. Michelangelo three-piece bronze Medal. Issued 1977. Commemorating the Renaissance polymath (59mm, 522.5 g, 12h). By K. Räsänen for Sporrong in Norrtälje.


    Top piece, obverse: MICHELANGELO, bare head facing slightly right—adapted from Jacopino del Conte's painting; all set over incuse central area // Top piece, reverse: Helpless nude male falling; all set over incuse central area. /// Middle piece, obverse: Nude male, with back facing, chiseling, with radiant flames emanating from left, right, and above; all set over raised central area // Middle piece, reverse: Nude male, reclining left, drawing sketches, as if inscribing upon the interior of the Sistine Chapel; all set over raised central area /// Bottom piece, obverse: Three nude falling figures, two male, one female—an allusion to Michelangelo's Last Judgment; all set over incuse central area; half skull to right // Bottom piece, reverse: Nude male (Michelangelo) seated facing on low stool, acting as puppet master, controlling figures of the pope, a military commander, and a king—the last of whom has toppled; all set over incuse central area. Edge: SPORRONG.


    Hackl & Klose 87. Essentially as Made. Attractive brown surfaces, with some deeper hues accentuating all of the devices. An extraordinary work of modern medallic art in triplicate.


    Regarded as one of the greatest—if not the greatest—artists of all time, Michaelangelo was born in 1475 in the Republic of Florence. During his 88 years, he would become an extraordinarily accomplished sculptor, painter, architect, and poet, with some of his most well-known works being the sculptures of the David and the Pietà, as well as his frescoes in the Sistine Chapel, such as The Last Judgment and The Creation of Adam. This ambitious, ultra-modern creation of Räsänen samples some of the most important aspects associated with the great Michelangelo, with the bottom reverse featuring a nude Michelangelo as a puppet master, quite appropriately showing how influential he was, in that, among his patrons, were the Medici, seven popes, and King François of France—all of whom he was able to direct with his mastery. Despite the impressive majesty of this piece, it was not well received within the American market, with nearly all examples remaining in Scandinavia—an aspect that perplexed Räsänen at the time, though may be linked to its heavy use of nudity and it not playing well within the more puritan-minded American audience.


    Upload: 15 August 2023.


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