Charles Scribner III      

art historian, author, editor, and lecturer

































Bernini's Cristo Vivo

--from St Peter's to Princeton

for article in Princeton University Art Museum Record, vol. 77-78, 2017-18 [2021], pp, 15-23, click link:

Bernini's 'Cristo vivo' crucifixes in St Peter's basilica and
the Princeton University Art Museum incorporate a unique
revision by the artistic impresario of Baroque Rome. 
Designed in 1659 and executed--under close supervision--
by his assistant Ercole Ferrata, the 'Cristo vivo' represents
the dramatic finale to the series of 25 crucifixes commissioned
by Pope Alexander VII Chigi.  Tracing Bernini's earlier 
developmentof the 'Cristo morto', the author explains the
surprising late addition of the 'Living  Christ' to the series of
castings both stylistically (in comparison with Algardi's prior
version) and iconographically, with special reference to
Bernini's Daniel  in the Chigi Chapel: in his dynamic evocation
of Christ's final words on the cross, Bernini added a proleptic 
vision of the Resurrected Christ celebrated in the Eucharist at
the altar below--a brilliant conflation in sculpture of sacrifice
and triumph.