Unveiling ceremony for the monument to Pope John Paul II in Ploermel, France

On December 10, 2006 in the French city of Ploermel in Bretagne there will be a consecration and a dedication ceremony for the monument to Pope John Paul II.

This sculptural composition has been designed by Zurab Tsereteli, President of the Russian Academy of Arts, People’s Artist of RF and UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador.

The construction of this monument in France will be a significant event in the development of spiritual relations between Russia and other Christian countries.

The Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia in his letter directed to the artist noted, that the dedication ceremony would be a manifestation of “spirit of cooperation and tolerance”.

The Pontiff Benedict XV1 has supported the idea of the monument to John Paul П, which “will remind all people of the indefatigable pilgrim of justice and peace”.

It is not the first monument by Zurab Tsereteli in France. In 1994, the artist’s model of the sculptural composition “Birth of a New Man”, appreciated by UNESCO Commission for Culture as “the best work of plastic art of the 20th century”, was installed on the front grounds of UNESCO Headquarters in Paris. In 2004, in the city of Agde on the square at the Palace of Congress there was a dedication of the monument to the outstanding French novelist Honore de Balzac attended by public and political figures of Russia and France. In Moscow, on the square near the “Space” hotel stands the artist’s monument in honor of one of the great figures of France Charles de Gaulle.

The master has been actively working on images of saints. He has created sculptural portraits of St. George, Apostle Paul, St. Nicholas the Wonder-Worker, hero of the battle of Kulikovo Alexander Peresvet, Reverend Irinarkh. His 64 illustrations on topics from the Old and New Testament have been executed in various techniques and materials starting from drawings, enamels, reliefs to huge monumental bas-reliefs and multi-figured compositions in round sculptures.

The statue of Pope John Paul II stands on a grey granite base in the center of an arch topped with a cross. The monument is 7.5m high.

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