Me not know art, but me know what me don’t like

So this exists:

Shirtless statue of Pope Benedict causes art sensation in Rome

(Sculpture of Emeritus Pope Benedict XVI by Italian artist Jago. (Credit: Federico Manzoni.)

Jacopo Cardillo, an Italian sculptor of international fame whose art name is Jago, definitely took this definition to a whole new level when he decided recently to “undress” Benedict XVI and portray him shirtless instead of dressed in the usual papal regalia.

Ever since, the technically remarkable sculpture has been the object of both criticism and praise, with some viewing it as desecrating the image of the emeritus pontiff while others judge it as an honest portrayal. For Jago, the work of art was never meant to be “derisive,” but rather a celebration of Benedict XVI, whom he considers to be a model for what every pope should be.

“I consider this man to be the greatest theologian alive,” he told Crux in a phone interview.

I take his word for it that he made it to honor Benedict, not mock him.  Such matters are purely an expression of taste.  This is not to my taste, but I regard such matters as aesthetic, not moral or theological.  Any act done out of a desire to show love is received by God with honor and I have no doubt the Almighty is pleased with the sculptor, however his work strikes my palate.

And, by the way, he’s right: Benedict is our greatest living theologian. Ad multos annos!

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