JUDAS ULLULAQ (1937-1999)
Private Collection, Oregon
This double-sided sculpture portrays the multiplicity of existence, with the exuberance of the dance and cultural life depicted on one side, balanced by the dynamic energy of a man on the move on the verso. Another being is present too, in the form of the tiny apparition hovering on the dancer’s shoulder. This sculpture contains multitudes—the artist, the traveller, and the spirit.
“Drum Dancer with Spirit” brings to mind Benvenuto Cellini’s “Perseus with the Head of Medusa” in the Piazza della Signoria in Florence. The front of that sculpture depicts the mythical hero raising the head of the Gorgon, while on the back of Perseus’ head, Cellini carved a self-portrait. Perhaps “Drum Dancer with Spirit” can be viewed as a self-portrait of sorts, representing the roles Ullulaq felt he embodied.
Whether it is a personal or a more generalized portrait, “Drum Dancer with Spirit” asks us to consider more than one being, a grouping of figures in conversation with each other.
Mostly good condition. The handle of the drum has been noticeably repaired. There is a half inch chip to the hand holding the drum.
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