The Netherlands, 1998.
Silver medal made by Roberto Ruggiu for the Vereniging voor Penningkunst (Society for Medal Art). This is a registration medal. Of this particular medal, 107 copies were made. Most medals of the Vereniging voor Penningkunst have a mintage of several hundred copies.
Measurements: 36 mm
Material: 1st grade silver
Weight: 66 grams.
Production: foundry Bruining, Zandvoort.
Condition: some spots (I did not brush the medal).
When I was asked to make a medal in commemoration of the 200th death day of Ciacomo Casanova, probably the most famous and genius adventurer of his age, I was instantly reminded of the statues given to use so vividly by Federico Fellini. His film shows a Casanova that is capable of enchanting all women, as he knew how to recognize and admire something personal and unique in each of them. Aside from being a great admirer of women and gold, he was also a sword fighter and swindler, enlightened thinker, economic reformer, diplomate, mediator and alchemist, knighted into knight of 'Seingalt', and someone who created romances and ballets on the spot. On one side of the medal is a depiction of a rooster's head between the year of his death and year of issue. The rooster is not only a symbol of the womanizer, but also a symbol of alchemic awakening. Additionally, I have chosen to cast this medal in silver, as the element of silver within alchemy is connected to the moon and the femininity of the cosmos, as opposed to the element of gold, connected to the sun and the masculine. Much like how Fellini has woven eroticism as a red thread through Casanova's life in his film, I have utilized the other side of the medal to depict his fascination with all women. This side showcases a woman's navel as it is, sensual and intimate, with a tangible skin. I wanted to emphasize these elements in this medal. From Louk Tilanus's book Handzame Sculptuur (Practical Sculpture): Traces of physicality on medals have been known to use since the Work of Esser: In his Rembrandt appeared thumb and finger prints on the Work without shame, as a visible result of the creative process. The Italian Roberto Ruggiú - not a student of Esser, but of the Royal Academy for Art and Design in Den Bosch, and of the Jan van Eyck Academy in Maastricht - made a cast of a woman's navel to commemorate his countryman Casanova. The adventurer Giovanni Lacopo Casanova de Seingalt (1725-1798), 'l'homme bonnes fortunes', who described his own scabrous life in his twelve-part memoirs, was a great admirer of women and gold; he was an alchemist and a cheater, and he did dueling. He knew all the important intellectuals of his time. Aside from in his own Memoirs, he is immortalized most beautifully by Marcello Mastroianni in Ettore Scola's La noit de Varenne - and by Ruggiú in this medal. Ruggiú wanted to make Casanova tangible: a navel on one side, and on the other side the head of a rooster as symbol for the alchemic awakening. The name is on the rim. A medal for the real admirer.
The medal will be shipped registered.
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