Geometric Muscles (1959-60)


Peter Nemes 
Amerigo Tot Research

Geometric Muscles

The Palazzo dello Sport (Sport Palace) nowadays called PalaLottomatica was built between 1956 and 1960 designed by Pier Luigi Nervi és Marcello Piacentini architects. This building is referred to as the masterpiece of the Italian rationalist architecture with its 11.200 seats serving as the venue of the 17th Summer Olympic Games in Rome. Amerigo Tot’s blue glazed ceramic relief, the Geometric Muscles was stationed on the semi circle parapet running on one side of the grandstand inside the palace. The size of the relief is 2,1x20 m. It was made between 1959 and 1960. The relief belongs to the line of the Tunnel and the Termini Frieze in terms of its design and creation. It is made of numerous smaller pieces. Its depth is 21 cm. The relief fits brilliantly to the arch shaped grandstand. The artist’s experiences gained in professional ceramics in South Italy, in Vietri between 1948 and 52 concentrate in this work of art. Tot talks about this statue in his interview with Zsuzsa D. Feher:

„The 'Sport Palace' was made for the Olympic Games in Rome, and I call it the Geometric Muscles. Everything moves according to a certain theory in geometry. Even the muscles, getting prepared for the Olympics are set according to a certain theory, they move as they have to move. So no frippery should be on it. Yes. All our movements are done according to a certain law. Just like emotions or thoughts. I can tell that this ceramic was done completely by my hand as an artisan arts work, I built the kiln, I burnt it, I glazed it.”










H. 2,1 m, W. 20 m

Palazzo Dello Sport

Rome, Italy


  • Reliefs

The relief belongs to the line of the Termini-frieze and the Dazzle, Lights and Semaphores sculptures.


The Palazzo dello Sport
is open for the public during events and concerts.

+39 06 592 5205

Piazzale dello Sport
EUR, Rome, Italy

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