Mater Dolorosa

Sculptor : Juan Alberto Pérez Rojas
Date | 2021
Materials : Cedar wood polychromed in oils
Dimensions | 170 cm
Location : Parish of St. Trinità, Parete (Naples)

Description of the work

The work in question is an image of the Virgin Mary, one of the so-called candlestick images. Made without prior commission, it is made of cedar wood and polychromed in oil.

Starting from the tradition of Sevillian imagery, the sculptor takes references from one of the best predecessors who cultivated this iconography of the Virgin in the 20th century, the image-maker Sebastián Santos Rojas. He is thus heir through his master Juan Manuel Miñarro, and the latter, through his own, Francisco Buiza, through whom he connects with the good work of the sculptor from Huelva.

The figure shows a correct modelling of the oval face which, together with the softness of the forms used in the other anatomical elements of the face, give the image a serenity and pain contained in the line that Pérez Rojas has shown so far in his Marian trajectory. A detailed study of the figure and of the psychology that is manifested in the serenity and introspection of his works.

The modelling of the mouth and nose shows a serene pain, contained despite the dilation of the nostrils. The eyes are made of glass and contribute, with their realism, to reinforcing the intention of the whole over and above any particularities.
The anatomy of the hands, of great delicacy, has references to life with an idealisation typical of the classic Sevillian iconography of the Sorrowful Virgin.

The polychromy is heir to the Andalusian tradition that has been successfully cultivated in this type of image of the Virgin. In pleasant pink tones, it uses vermilion to accentuate the pain in the eyes and cheekbones. The careful drawing of the eyebrows emphasises the sorrowful and serene expression of the work, which invites contemplation and introspection in her presence.