Welcome to Hell: Wicked Sand Demons from Dante’s Inferno [46 PICS]

July 21st, 2011 Permalink

Dante’s Inferno – welcome to hell, a mixture of culture and amazingly intricate and evil sand sculpture art. Dante Alighieri wrote the 14th-century epic poem in which Inferno, meaning hell in Italian, is the first part of his Divine Comedy. The International Sand Sculpture Festival was held in Venice, Italy, on the beach of Jesolo Lido. The Sultans of Sand Worldwide brought together 18 incredibly talented master sand sculptors from 9 countries. 2,000 tons of sand were used to craft 24 different scenes from the 9 circles of hell in Dante’s Inferno. Some of these wildly wicked sculptures stood over 4 meters (13 feet) high and were built in only 10 days! While professional sand sculptors can carve out both amazing and sometimes bizarre creations, the intricate designs of these giant sand demons make this one of the most mind-blowing, bizarre, and unforgettable International Sand Sculpture Festivals ever. A very special thank you to photographers Marco Rizzetto and Gael Reignier for granting me permission to post their copyrighted pictures that show off all 9 circles of Dante’s Inferno. Get ready to traipse through the nine levels, “circles,” of hell: Limbo, Lust, Gluttony, Greed, Anger, Heresy, Violence, Fraud and Treachery. [46 Photos]

sand demon sculpture - Dante's Inferno

Beyond the scorching sands of the desert lie the gates to hell. Welcome to hell, or at least a sandy version of Dante’s Inferno. Evil sand sculptures brought to you from master sand sculptors. Photo #1 by smo9monster at Skull Brain

Welcome to Dante's Hell pre-circle ride with the ferryman Charon

Welcome to Dante’s Hell. In the pre-circle is “Charon the Ferryman.” 18 sand sculpture artists at the Jesolo Lido theme festival were asked to create Dante’s Inferno with sand. Their inspiration for the evil yet amazing art was to come from Canto III of Dante’s Inferno, verses 1-9: Dante stands at the edge of the world of damned souls and reads: Through me is the way into the woeful city; through me is the way into eternal woe; through me is the way among the lost people. Justice moved my lofty maker: the divine Power, the supreme Wisdom and the primal Love made me. Before me were no things created, unless eternal, and I eternal last. Leave every hope, ye who enter! The result sandy results depicted scenes from hell as sand sculptors some of the most famous characters, scenes, and mythological figures from Dante’s Inferno. Photo #2 by © Gael Reignier


Charon the ferryman close up - Dante's Inferno sand sculpture

Outside of the 9 circles of Dante’s Inferno were a few scenes including “Virgil and Dante descend into Hell”. This is another shot of “Charon the Ferryman” in the pre-circle to give you a better look at the incredible detail that sand masters can sculpt. According to Dante’s Inferno, Charon pilots Virgil and Dante across the river Acheron and into Hell. Photo #3 by © Gael Reignier

Limbo in Dante's Hell, Circle 1  sand sculptures and start of Circle 2

Circle 1 of Hell was “Limbo.” Dante wrote, Let us descend into the blind world. Photo #4 by © Marco Rizzetto

Jesolo Dante's Inferno Circle 2 The Lustful sand sculpture

The Second Circle of Hell was Lust. This sand sculpture for Circle 2 was called “The Lustful.” According to Dante, those in this level of lust hell: . . . no hope ever comforts them, not of repose, but even of less pain. Photo #5 by © Marco Rizzetto

Evil sand sculpture entering Circle 3 of Dante's Hell

Each circle at Jesolo Lido sand festival started with an intricately wicked number. This is the evil sand sculpture for entering Circle 3 of Dante’s Hell. Dante recorded …new torments and new tormented souls I see around me wherever I move, and howsoever I turn, and wherever I gaze. Photo #6 by © Gael Reignier

Hounds of Hell sand sculptures Circle 3 The Cerebrus

The Hounds from Hell in the Third Circle were called “The Cerebrus.” Photo #7 by © Marco Rizzetto

We rather liked the killer hounds of hell. It reminded us of the sandman bringing his own sandy version of a nightmare. Om nom nom nom – ready to eat you as this level of hell involves Gluttony. Photo #8 by © Gael Reignier

Dante's Hound from hell - malvagio at Jesolo Lido

Would you dare get this close to the vicious hound from hell? Photo #9 by © Gael Reignier

The Gluttons sand sculpture in Dante's Hell - Circle 3

Also in Circle 3 were “The Guttons.” Photo #10 by © Gael Reignier

Circle 3 The Gluttons sand sculpture in Dante's Inferno, Jesolo Lido

Up close and personal with one of the begging gluttons. Photo #11 by © Gael Reignier

The Avaricious sand sculpture Dante's Inferno at Jesolo Lido

Circle 4 of Dante’s Inferno was a sand sculpture representing “The Avaricious” since the Fourth Circle represents Greed. Photo #12 by © Marco Rizzetto

Roasting in Dante's Hell, Circle 5 sand sculptures

Roasting in Dante’s Hell, Circle 5 sand sculptures. Photo #13 by © Gael Reignier

Sand sculptures of Danta's Inferno - Circle 5 lost souls in The River Styx

This level of hell involves Anger. Circle 5 had two superb sand sculptures. The first in the fifth circle of hell were lost souls caught for eternity in the “The River Styx.” Photo #14 by © Gael Reignier

inside dante's inferno The River Styx flowing into the City of Dis

The River Styx flowed into the City of Dis. Photo #15 by © Marco Rizzetto

City of Dis - Circle 5 of Dante's sandy hell

“City of Dis” – Circle 5 of Dante’s sandy hell. Photo #16 by © Gael Reignier

Danta's Inferno - Circle 5 The City of Dis sand sculpture details

Dante’s Inferno sand sculpture details in “The City of Dis.” Photo #17 by © Gael Reignier

Dante's Hell Circle 6 sand sculpture

Dante’s Hell where Circle 6 sand sculptures are about Heresy. Photo #18 by © Gael Reignier

Dante's Inferno The Heretics Circle 6

“The Heretics” from hell in Circle 6. Photo #19 by © Marco Rizzetto

Dante's Inferno sand sculpture Circle 6 of Hell - The Heretics

More sand sculptures from the Sixth Circle of Dante’s Inferno and “The Heretics.” Photo #20 by © Gael Reignier

The Reaper Circle 7 of Dante's Hell

Circle 7 was large and began with the sand sculpture of a skull called “The Reaper.” The Seventh Circle of Hell deals with Violence. Photo #21 by © Gael Reignier

Circle 7 - Dante's Inferno - The Minotaur

Circle 7 then moved to “The Minotaur.” Photo #22 by © Gael Reignier

Circle 7 Harpies Taunting the Suicides in Dante's Hell

Next stop in Dante’s Hell within Circle 7 is the “Harpies Taunting the Suicides.” Photo #23 by © Gael Reignier

Circle 7 closeup of sand sculpture Harpies Taunting the Suicides Dante's Hell

Circle 7 closeup of sand sculpture “Harpies Taunting the Suicides.” Photo #24 by © Marco Rizzetto

Dante's Hell Circle 7 The Centaurs

Last stop in the Seventh Circle of hell was “The Centaurs.” Photo #25 by © Gael Reignier

Circle 7 Jesolo sand sculpture The Centaurs from Dante's Inferno

You are now leaving Circle 7 and “The Centaurs.” Photo #26 by © Marco Rizzetto

Evil in Circle 7 of Dante's Hell

Evil in Dante’s Hell. One of President Kennedy’s favorite quotations was based on an interpretation of Dante’s Inferno: . . . ‘The hottest places in Hell are reserved for those who in time of moral crisis preserve their neutrality.’. Photo #27 by © Gael Reignier

Circle 8 of Dante's sandy hell

The Eighth Circle of Dante’s sandy Inferno is huge and deals with sins of Fraud. Photo #28 by © Gael Reignier

Coming up on “Greyon the Guardian” within Circle 8. Photo #29 by © Marco Rizzetto

Dante's Inferno - Circle 8 Greyon the Guardian

Up closer to the winged-beast. Photo #30 by © Gael Reignier

Dante's Hell Circle 8 sand sculpture

Dante’s Hell Circle 8 sand sculpture. Photo #31 by © Marco Rizzetto

Circle 8 close up of devils in Dante's Inferno

Circle 8 closeup of devils in Dante’s Inferno. Photo #32 by © Marco Rizzetto

Circle 8 The Simonists sand sculpture Dante's Inferno

Circle 8 “The Simonists.” Photo #33 by © Gael Reignier

Circle 8 Dante's Inferno wicked one

Another wicked one within Dante’s Eighth Circle. Photo #34 by © Gael Reignier

Circle 8 The Corrupted Politicians

The more life changes, the more it stays the same. From Dante’s 14th century Inferno, “The Corrupted Politicians.” Photo #35 by © Gael Reignier

eternal damnation in sand sculpture awaiting corrupted politicians in Dante's Hell - Circle 8

Eternal damnation awaiting corrupted politicians in Dante’s Hell – Circle 8. Photo #36 by © Marco Rizzetto

The Corrupted Politicians Circle 8 Dante's Hell closeup

“The Corrupted Politicians” closeup. This is particularly impressive as if the master sand sculptors really got into it. Perhaps they knew a few fraudulent politicians who they might like to see damned to a similar fate? Photo #37 by © Marco Rizzetto

Ulysses’ Shipwreck sand sculpture Jesolo Lido Dante's Hell

Up next in the Eight Circle is “Ulysses’ Shipwreck” sand sculpture at Jesolo Lido and Dante’s Hell. Photo #38 by © Marco Rizzetto

When Hell Freezes Circle 8 Dante's Inferno sand sculpture

“When Hell Freezes” in Circle 8 of Dante’s Inferno. Photo #39 by © Gael Reignier

Dante's Inferno in sand sculptures circle 8 Count Ugolino Gnawing the Head of the Archbishop

Last stop in Circle 8 is “Count Ugolino Gnawing the Head of the Archbishop.” Photo #40 by © Gael Reignier

sand demon creator at Jesolo Dante's Inferno

Circle 9 of Dante’s Inferno is especially evil as well as details to blow your mind. The Ninth Circle is “Satan.” Here is the sand demon’s creator at Jesolo Lido. Photo #41 by smo9monster at Skull Brain

making of a sand demon

The making of a sand demon. Photo #42 by smo9monster at Skull Brain

sand demon  aka satan from dante's hell

According to Dante’s Inferno,the Ninth Circle of Hell was reserved for the sin of Treachery. The very center of Circle 9 is where Satan is condemned to dwell for committing the ultimate treachery against God. Photo #43 by smo9monster at Skull Brain

sand demon

Dante described Satan as a giant, terrifying beast with three faces, one red, one black, and one a pale yellow: he had three faces: one in front bloodred; and then another two that, just above the midpoint of each shoulder, joined the first; and at the crown, all three were reattached; the right looked somewhat yellow, somewhat white; the left in its appearance was like those who come from where the Nile, descending, flows. Photo #44 by smo9monster at Skull Brain

sand demon 3

Incredible details on the sand demon aka Satan from Dante’s Hell. Photo #45 by smo9monster at Skull Brain

eye of a sand demon in Dante's Hell

Eye of sandy Satan and last stop. Time to get the hell out of Dante’s Inferno. We hope you enjoyed the blend of culture the masters created with these amazingly evil sand sculptures. Photo #46 by © Gael Reignier


24 Responses to “Welcome to Hell: Wicked Sand Demons from Dante’s Inferno [46 PICS]”

Leave a Reply