BRACCI, Pietro
(b. 1700, Roma, d. 1773, Roma)

Tomb of Maria Clementina Sobieski

Basilica di San Pietro, Vatican

In 1744 Bracci executed the sculptural groups for the tomb of Maria Clementina Sobieski, conceived of by the architect Filippo Barigioni. The tomb can be considered to be one of the most beautiful works of its kind, with the use of a painted portrait, in accordance with the typology that was gaining popularity in those years, and which Bracci himself reused in the tomb of Cardinal Leopoldo Calcagnini in Sant'Andrea della Fratte (1746), returning to the motif of pyramid, the symbol of eternity.

In the Clementina Sobieski tomb, what is striking is the balance between the different materials (the great alabaster cloth, the white marble of the figures, and the gilded bronze of the crown and flame), which compete in forming the compositional unity held together by the Berninian type of invention of Barigioni.

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