The Knights of Columbus Museum opens a new exhibition Dec. 8, 2010, featuring a full-scale bronze reproduction of Michelangelo’s Bruges Madonna sculpture.
Michelangelo’s Madonna & Child: The Bruges in Bronze runs through March 15, 2011.
Michelangelo (1475–1564) was a painter, sculptor and architect during the Italian Renaissance. Two of his best-known works, the Pietà and David, were sculpted before he turned 30. Michelangelo also created the fresco scenes from Genesis and the Last Judgment in Rome’s Sistine Chapel.
Carved in Florence, the Bruges Madonna is the only known Michelangelo sculpture to leave Italy during his lifetime. It was purchased by two brothers from the Mouscron family, affluent cloth merchants in Belgium, and donated to the beautiful, gothic Church of Our Lady in the city of Bruges.
This exact reproduction was cast from a 1932 plaster mold by the Marinelli Foundry in Florence, Italy. The world-renowned bronze foundry also cast the Holy Door of Saint Peter’s Basilica, the spiral staircases of the Vatican Museums, monuments for the U.S. Department of Defense and many items in the restoration of the Kremlin in Moscow.
The bronze Madonna was unveiled Oct. 27, 2009, at the Casa Buonarroti, Michelangelo’s home in Florence. Two months later, it made its U.S. premiere in Washington, D.C., at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception.
The lenders are members of the Gaddy family, entrepreneurs and altruists from Virginia.
To open the exhibit, the Museum will present an Advent and Marian lecture, “The Immaculate Mother of God,” by Dominican Father Jonah Pollock, on Dec. 8 at 5:30 p.m.
Father Pollock is parochial vicar at St. Mary’s Church in New Haven. A native of the Syracuse, N.Y., region and a 2001 graduate of the Franciscan University of Steubenville, he entered the Order of Preachers in 2003, professed solemn vows in 2007 and was ordained in 2009. He also holds a Master’s in Divinity and a Licentiate in Sacred Theology from the Dominican House of Studies in Washington, D.C.