Kristin Jones, She Wolves (2005), Piazza Tevere, Rome. Photo: Erica Kruger

She Wolves

Piazza Tevere, between Ponte Sisto and Ponte Mazzini, Rome, Italy

Commissioned by:

1800′ L

Water, Travertine

The She-wolf has been the recognizable symbol of Rome for millennia. She is the icon of the mythological beginnings of the City, embodying the dichotomy between nature and culture. The legendary account of the city’s origins tells of the wild she-wolf who rescues the infant twins and nurtures civilization.

She Wolves brought the mythic Roman She-Wolf to life on the banks of the Tiber. The darkened travertine embankment walls of the Tiber River were washed, to reveal twelve majestic she-wolves, accurately drawn from historical sources and etched from the patina of history. The shadowed procession of silhouettes faces downstream, where the river meets the sea. The frieze stands eight meters high and spans the entire length of the Piazza Tevere, between Ponte Sisto and Ponte Mazzini, 560 meters.

She Wolves was researched with the guidance of archaeologist Claudio Parisi Presicce, the foremost scholar of the She-Wolf, who generously offered access to his catalogue of more than three hundred images from the archives of the Capitoline Museum and around the world. Under Presicce’s guidance, historical images were selected from the nearly three-thousand-year history of the She-Wolf icon and rendered graphically by Francesca Fini.