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Sunday, 19 April 2015

Modern art in City churches

Death Mask of Jesus Christ by Enzo Plazzotta can be seen at St Mary Abchurch.

"Plazzotta was born in Mestre, near Venice and died aged sixty after having worked in London as a sculptor for more than half his life. He always maintained his links with Italy and had a studio at Pietrasanta in Tuscany from 1967.

He studied at the Accademia di Brera in Milan under Giacomo Manz├╣, among others. His studies were interrupted by World War II in which he became a Partisan leader near Lago Maggiore.

After the war Plazzotta took up sculpture again and following a commission from the Italian Committee of Liberation to commemorate their successful collaboration with the British Special Forces, he came to London to present the statuette personally to the Special Forces club. This proved to be a major turning point in his career as a sculptor for, liking the English and the freedom of political thought, he decided to make London his home.

He gradually established himself as a portrait sculptor but found this field rather limiting and preferred to experiment with his growing fascination for movement, developing techniques for conveying it in such diverse subjects as dance, horses and the human form.

There was also a stronger, more deeply expressive and less immediately appealing side to his work. Through his studies and adaptations of mythology and classical/Christian themes he was able to convey great power and emotion encompassing the frequent vain striving of mankind."

"In 1976 Plazzotta was knighted by the Italian government and was awarded the title of Cavaliere for his services to art. The artist died in 1981. His work can be seen today in several public spaces throughout London, such as the Barbican Centre, the College Gardens of Westminster Abbey and the Royal Opera House."


Ben Harper - Picture of Jesus.

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