Street artist Paolo Buggiani brings incendiary art to Andes

Italian street artist Paolo Buggiani rides a flaming bicycle down Main Street in front of the Andes Hotel on Friday, October 7, 2011.

Diners on the porch of the Andes Hotel on Friday evening got a little spectacle along with their supper: A brief but memorable visit from Paolo Buggiani, an Italian street artist known for his flaming scuptures as well as for pulling stunts like roller-skating through New York City dressed as a metal-clad, fiery Minotaur.

The occasion? Buggiani is visiting a longtime friend, Andes stone sculptor Ken Hiratsuka, who has transformed his rural homestead on Route 28 into a dance and stone-carving studio called the Squid Farm. (One of Buggiani's sculptures, a large metal reptile, is mounted on the side of Hiratsuka's barn, and is a well-known local landmark.)

Buggiani will be holding a small sculpture exhibition at the Squid Farm, 34325 Route 28 in Andes, this afternoon (Saturday, October 8), from 2 to 6pm. We hear there may be fire involved -- not too surprising, given the artist's philosophy on the topic:

"I consider fire the basic element of life. Without sun there would be no life on the planet. It depends on how man uses fire - it can give life or destruction."

Below: A video pastiche of Paolo Buggiani's works, from 2007. Edited by Matteo Basile.