Arturo Di Modica Biography: Wiki, Age, Career, Death Cause

Who is Arturo Di Modica? Arturo Di Modica Bio/Wiki

Arturo Di Modica was an American sculptor born in Italy, best known for his Charging Bull sculpture, which he dropped as his gift to the US outside the New York Stock Exchange on December 15, 1989. He arrived penniless in New York in 1970 and rose to prominence. He was born on January 26, 1941, in Vittoria, Sicily, Italy.

Black Monday hit the US stock markets in 1987 when Di Modica felt indebted to the country. Di Modica was intended by Charging Bull to encourage anyone who came into contact with it to continue fighting for the future despite tough times.

Modica has died in his hometown in Italy.


He was 80 years old.


Di Modica set up his first studio on Grand Steet in Soho upon arrival in New York. He became known for leaving large-scale works of marble outside his studio on the path.

It was also here that Di Modica discovered Jean-Michel Basquiat (aka SAMO), a young graffiti artist, spray-painting his studio door. In the early 1980s, the two would later both switch onto Crosby Street on Soho as well, as Basquiat witnessed his rise to fame.

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In 2017, when a sculpture of a small female child named “Fearless Girl” appeared in front of it, Charging Bull attracted media attention. Di Modica argued that the sculpture changed the context of his work and threatened lawsuits, saying, “Now I’m going to turn around the bull myself” at one point.

A man assaulted Charging Bull in 2019 with a steel banjo covered in nails and was attacked for a second time a few months later by Extinction Revolt demonstrators who covered the sculpture in fake blood and staged a die-in on the nearby traffic plaza.

A stainless steel version of Charging Bull came to Sotheby’s New York for sale in March 2019 and sold for $275,000 despite being in poor shape. His representative confirmed selling 4 ft sculptures for up to $496,000 in ‘Arturo Di Modica, The Last Modern Master’.

Death Cause

Di Modica died in his birthplace of Vittoria, Sicily, on February 19, 2021, having turned 80 twenty-four days earlier and having had cancer for a number of years.

He was in Vittoria for over a year, unable to return to New York because of his illness and travel restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic in Italy.

He was working on a 132-foot-high twin horse sculpture at the time of his death, to be erected in his hometown on the banks of a river.

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