Notes: "Neil Travis' New York" Gossip article, NY Post, posted on Jerry Lewis fan site:
WHILE he doesn't claim to be an art expert, Gov. Pataki can pick the best of the crop. Last year, while he and economic development czar Charlie Gargano were in Italy drumming up business, Pataki met sculptor Ugo Attardi.
He admired the artist's work - in Rome, Attardi's heroic statues stand shoulder-to-shoulder with classic studies - and the two became great friends.
Attardi impulsively gave Pataki a 16-foot bronze "Ulysses" that was installed on state land in Battery Park, across from the Statue of Liberty, in September.
The city of Naples is now set to receive an almost-identical Attardi, and the authorities there say they will insure the statue for a cool $2 million, which says a lot about Pataki's eye.