Zeus, the father of Gods, fell in love with a beautiful princess from Phoenicia named
Europe. Her name implied that she had great eyes and wide forehead. He
approached the lady of his heart, disguised into a white bull, as she played with her
fellowship on a coast of her country.
The girls, bewitched by the beauty of the robust animal and as it seemed quite friendly, caress and play with the bull and at some point, Europe tries to ride it. The moment has come for Zeus; the bull suddenly rushes to the sea and abducts her, despite her tears and cries and through the waves of the Mediterranean he carries the woman that he loves to Crete.
Three wonderful men come to life of Zeus’ and Europe’s bond: Sarpidon, Radamanthus and Minos and they, by their turn, give birth to a wonderful period of archeology - The Minoan Era.
Nikos and Pandelis Sotiriades, inspired by this beautiful story, created the “The
abduction of Europe” a sculpted complex of monumental size, which today stands
outside the European Parliament in Strasburg.
The dimensions of “The Abduction of Europe” are monumental: the sculpture is 15 ft. (440 cm) high, 5 ft. (150 cm) wide and 16 ft. (500 cm) long. Its’ weight exceeds the 8.818 lb. (4.000 kg). Europe is made of bronze, the bull is made of stainless steel, while on the back of the complex glass sheets are mounted in order to give an air of movement and of the water that the divine couple came through, but also, a sense of human-to-animal transformation in a way that, materialistically, provides the link with modern Art.
Crete, the place that the divine love affair bloomed in, offered to the place that the heart of united Europe is beating, a sculpted present that symbolizes its’ new -and yet very old- identity: the name of the continent and its’ new monetary unit originated in Crete.
The transportation and installation of “The Abduction of Europe” was completed in October 2005.
Nikos and Pandelis Sotiriades acknowledge that there is a major difficulty on making art nowadays. However they insist to live and create and they do it where they were born, because they believe that Inspiration springs authentically from each one’s Birth Land.