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Pope Francis honored by Bottega Tifernate: the Salus Populi Romani

For Bottega Tifernate, 2024 begins immediately with a very important delivery. On January 12, Stefano, Francesca and Romolo Lazzari joined Pope Francis in the Vatican to deliver the reproduction of the Salus Populi Romani. This is the third reproduction created, within a few years, by the Tifernate company and intended for the Holy Father.

The work created by Bottega Tifernate for Pope Francis was delivered during the audience of the Audiovisual Memories of Catholicism Foundation (Mac). It was the president of the Foundation, Monsignor Dario Edoardo Viganò, who strongly wanted to donate this reproduction to the Pontiff. The choice of the work was dictated by the strong bond between the icon of the Madonna and Pope Francis. In fact, the latter - says the president of the Foundation - on departure and return from each trip goes to the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore for a prayer in front of the Madonna. Furthermore – continues Monsignor Dario Viganò – he has repeatedly expressed, even publicly, the desire to be buried in the Pauline Chapel of Santa Maria Maggiore to always remain close to the painting.

For the reproduction of the work, on a 1:1 scale, attributed to Luca Evangelista, a poplar wood board was used. On the back there are two longitudinal crosspieces to avoid bending or breaking the panel. The panel has a primer composed of Bologna plaster and rabbit glue. It is a natural dough that fills the roughness of the table. The mixture makes it easier to slide the brush and protects the wood from the aggressiveness of the colour. The pictographic layer occurs following a study on the original. This is what distinguishes pictography from other techniques. Thanks to the use of oil colours, used in multiple layers of paint, combined with expert 24 Kt gold leaf gilding, it was possible to create a reproduction identical to the original following the latest restoration.

It's an indescribable emotion – says Stefano Lazzari – Pope Francis already has two of our works in his residence at Casa Santa Marta. In fact, he refers to the vocation of Saint Matthew by Caravaggio and the White Cruifixion by Marc Chagall. Despite this – concludes Lazzari – creating works intended for the Holy Father is always a unique emotion.

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