Sergio Fiorentino’s Contemporary Classicism Comes to Life at San Domenico Palace, Taormina, A Four Seasons Hotel

May 2, 2024,
Taormina, Italy

San Domenico Palace, Taormina, A Four Seasons Hotel - celebrated for its cultural heritage and often referred to as a “Museum Resort” - boasts an artistic treasure trove of more than 500 classic and contemporary works of art.  A new painting by Sicilian artist Sergio Fiorentino now completes the already impressive collection. This beautiful work of art entitled Greek Fragment has been installed in the evocative Ancient Cloister and will be officially unveiled on May 8, 2024.

Sergio Fiorentino is internationally renowned for his recognizable style characterized by classical and religious icons that stem from his Sicilian roots.  He contextualizes these icons within their native landscape and enhances them through unique colours and textures.

A native of Catania, Sergio Fiorentino now lives and works in Noto. It is from this part of Sicily that Fiorentino derives his trademark colours of blue and gold. The blue is inspired by the sea of​ the Vendicari reserve, while the gold stems from of the city of Noto, known as a triumph of Sicilian baroque.

In Greek Fragment, which is part of a collection of other fragments, the character has Hellenistic characteristics, but remains suspended in time. The series focuses on human beings who seemingly come from another planet or dimension, without gender and sometimes without a gaze, covered by the intense and recognizable blue of the artist. The blue colour recalls the element of water, of the amniotic fluid in which the beings remain sheltered from a well-defined time and place. The faces take on different volumes when the artist, while the paint is still wet, flakes and scratches the features, making their complexion similar to stone. The three-dimensionality of the technique is intensified by the golden aura surrounding the face.

This new work is not the first piece by Sergio Fiorentino on exhibition at the hotel.  Portrait of a Saint illuminates the Bar area of ​​the Bar & Choistro and another Portrait of a Saint embellishes the San Domenico Suite. However, to exhibit the majestic work Frammento Greco (consisting of four parts), Sergio Fiorentino chose the Ancient Cloister, the oldest part of the Hotel, dating back to the end of the 14th century. “I am happy about this collaboration with an icon of art, hospitality and history of Taormina like San Domenico Palace. It is an honour to be able to exhibit my works in a place frequented by many great artists. The photographer Baron Wilhelm Von Gloeden who took his en plein air photographs set among the colonnades of the Great Cloister and today my canvases colour the Ancient Cloister. The common thread of art, in all its forms, continues live on century upon century,” states the artist.

Sergio Fiorentino is also enthusiastic about having direct contact with the guests of the San Domenico Palace, A Four Seasons hotel, thanks to the new art experience launched this year: Behind the Scenes of Noto. Hotel guests can reach Noto by transfer or by helicopter and are then invited to meet the artist in his suggestive studio. The experience continues with a guided tour of the baroque city of Noto and its residences with a local luminary and concludes with a lunch at this special guide’s home, a lover of art, fashion, design and the art of living. Therefore, art is linked to flavours and the human relationships of those who experience Sicily in all its facets.

In Sicily, we breathe centuries of art and history. One can feel the vibrations of the many cultures that have influenced this incredibly rich island, for which San Domenico Palace, A Four Seasons hotel, is proud to be a voice, promoting its heritage to visitors from around the globe.