Steve Pi (short for Piscitelli) is a Vietnam War veteran, husband, and artist who has lived in Florida since 1991 and is best known for his bronze sculptures recreating ballet dancers. His most prominent piece is a larger-than-life dancer, recently on display outside Southern Ballet Theatre studios in downtown Orlando. Pi has also created desktop statues that the Southern Ballet presents as achievement awards. A bronze bust of musician Frank Zappa is on display at the Salvador Dalí Museum in St. Petersburg, FL.
Pi's work mostly has two themes—dancers and war. On the shelf above the worktable in his studio are dozens of sculptures in various stages of completion. Clay models and wax forms share space with heavy bronze sculptures. On the left are dancers in tutus standing en pointe and others caught in a grand jeté leap. On the right are tortured figures—battle fatigued soldiers collapsed on their weapons or crying a silent scream.
He explains, "I dealt with war imagery by making statues of what was bothering me. In order to counterbalance that depressing, miserable subject, I took the most beautiful form of human endeavor—which is dance—and began making dancers just simply as a balance."