For some time a few metres from the muzzle of the famous Wall Street bull in New York, another statue has appeared. It is called Fearless Girl. Set there temporarily for March 8, this work by the sculptor Kristen Visbal has nevertheless had its residence permit extended by the municipal authorities. This decision unleashed the fury of Arturo Di Modica, the sculptor of the bull, who requested its removal because, in his opinion, the little girl’s presence changes the significance of his work: the Charging Bull – in the process of attacking an opponent – represents the strength of the American people and their ability to recover from a crisis, whereas the work ends up by acquiring a negative significance. It is probably true that the new tenant changes the way the bull is perceived, but the value of art works can change over time. And that is how it is that the little girl is still standing jauntily and firmly in front of the bull’s snorting nostrils and sends a splendid message of resistance and peace.
St. Peter’s Square
Oct. 15, 2018
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