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Public Art in Rome

Rome, the “Eternal City”, is the capital of Italy. In ancient times the Romans were keen supporters of public art, in fact, they loved nothing more than erecting a statue in honour of an Emperor. The Romans treated public art with the same enthusiasm that they treated war. In fact, public art became a way of gloating, “to the victor came the spoils” so to speak. Bigger, better, grander. Artists, like warriors, were worshipped. From Triumphal Arches to marble statues, Emperors and later Popes wanted their achievements recognised and displayed for all the world to see and they wanted the best sculptors to create them. Many of the world’s greatest sculptors were commissioned by the pope, at some stage, to create statues and fountains.

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