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Bust of Pope Clement X
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17th Century
Gianlorenzo BERNINI
Born 1598 Italy, Died 1680
Bust of Pope Clement X
[Busto di Clemente X]
110 x 110 x 65 cm  [HxW]
Galleria Nazionale di Arte Antica di Palazzo Barberini, Roma

Bernini was the greatest Baroque sculptor of the 17th century. He admired the carving of Michelangelo, the classicism of Annibale Carracci and the emotionalism of Guido Reni. He strived to express both earthly character and spiritual state of mind and claimed ‘I have overcome the difficulty of making marble like wax’. Clement Altieri, Pope Clement X, died before this portrait could be completed. Struts of marble remain at the right hand, which is raised in blessing while the left hand holds a Papal ‘bull’ or letter. Bernini carved the head and hands and the rest of the sculpture is attributed to his assistants.

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