Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Camposanto di Staglieno, Genova: The Oneto Tomb

Let's get over with it. I know that it is mandatory to show at least one picture of the famous Angel of the Oneto-Tomb. Sorry for linking to the german Wikipedia; the english lacks the entry. Not my bad.

It was made by Giulio Monteverde (the english Entry is a bit poor.... Try the german one if you can...)

Strange thing though: There are quite opposite opinons about the Angel: Some Boffin in the German Wikipedia is convinced (i wonder why?) that she is not the usual grieving angel attached to the deceased but in contrary she is lacking interest for the one she's supposed to guard and that she's distant, closed and unfathomable.

I happen to have a copy of a book (printed in the 20s of the last century) and i'll quote what it says about that particular Angel:

....The Angel, who guards the urn, is admired for the perfect moulding of the arms, neck and head, the deep and soft expression of grief which appears on his features....

So much about being distant and not atttached. 

In my opinion these discussions doesn't matter at all. The point is: It is a marvellous and unbelievably beautiful Sculpture.


  1. Hay!Thanks for beautiful photos.It was my first trip to Italy,just to visit this cemetery.There are several interpretations of The Oneto Angel.Did you notice that she is actually leaning on a trumpet?That trumpet is to call for The Last Judgement.What makes this sculpture more ambiguous is the fact that she is probably either before or after the last call.She is looking down on humanity maybe sad, maybe indiffrent. Greetings from Marek from Poland

  2. Hi Marek! Thanks for your kind words; response like this makes me going on...

    It was a bit similar in my case: I longed to visit staglieno for years and years, but it was because of the angel from the "Love will tear us apart" single of Joy Divison.

  3. I think if people knew I wanted to go to Italy to visit a cemetery they would think I'm nuts. This piece in question is my favorite by far. I read somewhere in the description if the angel that she is patently waiting for the signal to blow that trumpet giving everyone that one last chance to repent before the last judgment. Thanks for the pictures!!

  4. This sculpture make me feel strange and vain. The same thing when you read Ozimandias. My personal opinion about the angel is her mixed feelings of sad, pain for be the angelhorn of the humanity last judgement.