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Cycling: Art and Culture - Pantani Monument Montelli
By Vaughn Trevi
Date: 3/12/2006
Cycling: Art and Culture - Pantani Monument Montelli

Cycling: Art and Culture
A passion for cycling and art live in an Italian artist in Ravenna Italy, Francesco Montelli. "Through my art I want to express the importance of communication that gives us the chance to say one thing in many ways, I am happy to be alive..." Pantani monument proposal.

A cycling fan and artist Francesco Montelli of Ravenna, Italy recently contacted us.

I'm keen on cycling. I'm an artist that wishes to introduce himself and his Art.
Well, I introduce myself, my name is Francesco Montelli. I'm a sculptor-painter-filmmaker and if you click on my name above you will see my site. To some, I'm a bad artist, to others a good artist and to others a naive artist that believes it is possible to be happy. Personally I think that all are right.
If you want to take a coffee break once in a while and watch a video comfortably seated in your chair, click on a title below (the last is a video on Pantani) and I swear that you don't waste your time...and I will be known to you.

Grazie per l'attenzione che mi state regalando, Francesco Montelli
The video was Montelli the cycling fan's salute to Pantani. (Follow the link to download)

Francesco became an apprentice to a firm that did art restoration on Renaissance art and historic objects after secondary school. His goal as a boy was to be an artist and a cowboy when he grew up. (John Wayne, Clint Eastwood movies and boys are international)
The years as a restorer, became his training ground as an to artist, after seven years, he left the firm and started his own professional restoration service and start his career as an artist.

Soon he had his first art show in Ravenna and branched out to explore painting, sculpture, set design and then later; movies, acting and other art forms. His site is filled with examples of his art and restoration work and award winning videos he has acted in and produced.

"Through my art I want to express the importance of communication that gives us the chance to say one thing in many ways, I am happy to be alive, and as we say, someone who is happy, is like someone who has eaten garlic; whenever he opens his mouth or keeps it closed you can tell"

Monteli's most recent work was a proposal for the Marco Pantani monument to be installed on the Giro route this year on the Motirolo. (Details of the contest are at the bottom of the page.) Although Francesco's proposal was not chosen, this passionate tifosi artist expressed his contentment with the project.

Francesco what  inspired you to do the sculpture and bust of Marco Pantani?
This is why I've chosen to represent Pantani in this way: the shape of the monument for Pantani came out after I've asked myself which was my feeling towards him. To celebrate him as a cyclist wasn't enough, because I had in me the affection for the man struck by accidents.

I don't know if he had more fallings or more victories; but I know these two things were bound in his experience. The joy in me for his victories was strengthened by him overcoming his problems.. until the time in which he had been struck in his heart to death. This fact tied up in me the feeling for him, as it did, I think, in the hearts of many Italians and in many other people all over the world.

I took the posture Pantani had on his bicycle when he was victorious and used to win on a steep slope. His expression is a mixture of exertion, serenity and result. I didn't put his bicycle because Pantani is the symbol, par excellence of cycling, the bicycle is in him, a part of him.

His bodysuit is of mosaic with a sky effect. Why mosaic? Because Pantani was magic; and magic is light and glittering... for this reason mosaic is perfect to show the glittering.
There is a golden nail in his chest and underlined by the brightness of the light blue of his bodysuit. I can give many explanations for the nail... it is a mirror in which everyone can see is a point in which the words end and the heart communicates.

Marco's legs push on two mountain ranges. His shoes are one pink and the other yellow bending the cliffs. This shape is a sculptural photogram that contains and explains very well the emotion in me of the magic Pantani. I see him on a circular pedestal on which people can sit or can climb to touch him, if they want.
(A 360 degree animated view of the proposal and more detailed photos can be found (including the tiled sculpture he describes above) on Francesco's site by clicking on sculptor and then projects.)

I guess I would like to sit under him, at least one time, and be there with him, since he left a feeling of affection  in me, in many Italians and in people from all over the world. So, these are the thing I wanted to express with this proposal and I thank those who had the idea to raise a monument for the "Pirate" even if they did not accept my project because molding it made me discover a shape that can hardly be forgotten after you have seen it. One day, if God wants, somewhere it will be seen and could be touched!

If one wants to buy a small bust or copy of your sculptures of Pantani, would this be possible in the future?
Yes, I've The face (scale 1:1) and I will soon make a bust made to order.

He also had an intriguing statue of a woman in the classic pose of Michaelangelo's David, entitled, "Davida"

About Davida... is this a salute or work of admiration to women in the style of Michaelangelo's David? have understood very well.
What is your creative desire to communicate through Davida?
My aim is to recognize to woman their power...that is a good thing for us men. Now we men are in crisis, but in the future we will become real men.

Davida is a project I have been working on  since 1992.
Thanks for your interest,
Francesco Montelli

About the Pantani Monument:
January 26, 2006 Bianchi
The winner is chosen of the contest "A monument in Memory of Marco Pantani
A sculture in memory of the “Pirata”will be created by Michele Biz, Alessandro Broglio and Alberto Pasqual on the climb of Mortirolo. The contest with Bianchi’s partnership was promoted by the Italian Professional Riders Association

“Remember Pantani in a simple and direct way, through the purity of the gesture characterising il Pirata and avoiding any kind of rhetoric”: this is the intent expressed by the winners of the contest that will created on the climb of Mortirolo a sculpture in memory of Marco Pantani.

The contest conceived by Felice Gimondi, promoted by the Italian professional riders, and sponsored by Bianchi, the company that furnished the Pirata with the bikes he triumphantly brought on the climbs of the Giro d’Italia and the Tour de France.
The monument standing on the most significative part of the climb of Mortirolo, in the Municipality of Mazzo di Valtellina, will be imposing. A sloping steel blade hung as a bracket on a wall built on one of the most demanding curves. On that belt-pedestal the shape of Marco Pantani in his classic race position: pushing on pedals, his hands below, looking at his rivals already far away…

The plan, that will be realized by Michele Biz, Alessandro Broglio and Alberto Pasqual, has been chosen by a jury presided by ACCPI President, Amedeo Colombo, with Felice Gimondi and Davide Brambilla, Bianchi managing director.
Davide Brambilla comments: "The eight proposals were very good and our rule of jury wasn’t easy. The idea of Biz, Broglio and Pasqual seemed us the most according with our idea of Pantani: the “Pirata” that fought on the climb and in the life".
The monument will be unveiled before May 27th , when the Giro will pass on the Mortirolo.

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