Jun 21, 2018 / Sculpture

Habemus Hominem by Jago

In 2009, on a commission from the Vatican, Jago created a bust of Pope Benedict XVI. He depicted the prelate with concave eyes after the style of the master sculptor Adolfo Wildt, who portrayed Pope Pius XI in a similar style, in a work now preserved in the Vatican Museums. After being told by the Vatican that the Pope did not approve of the likeness, and that the work would be rejected as it was, Jago exhibited his sculpture at the Italian Pavilion of the 2012 Venice Biennale, where it was finally seen by the Pope himself, who awarded him the Holy See’s “Pontifical Medal” that year. When Benedict resigned the papacy in 2013, Jago returned to the sculpture, stripping the bust of its papal vestments, in a process of “undressing,” and the result was Habemus Hominem. He sought to infuse the work with a sense of human frailty, and to brand it with the markings of age, to represent Benedict’s return to the status of a mortal.

Learn more about Jago at jago.art.