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Ferreris Demaklis Monument



The memorial is located inside an alcove and it is made up of two statues placed on a pedestal, on either side of a crankcase with the marble memorial stone. There are also two lions holding a sarcophagus above which is placed a sculpture depicting a woman. The memorial is dedicated to Anna Maria Ferreris who was the widow of the Swiss nobleman Gaspare De Maklis. He had moved to Bologna after the political upheavals happened in France and he committed himself to the trade thanks to which he managed to maintain thriving the economic situation of the family. The description of the monument in 'Collezione scelta dei Monumenti Sepolcrali' by Natale Salvardi (1825), declares that 'it was Anna Maria Ferraris's grand-son Gaspare who commissioned the monument that is now keeping her rests in the Certosa cemetery. They were very close and he was extremely devoted to the her and to the virtues she showed in her life which ended in 1819 when she was 86.' The work was commissioned by Gaspare De Maklis (her great-nephew) to Giovanni Putti. The artwork appears to be one of the most eccentric made by this artist.

The embodiment of the "Time" is very similar to the one belonging to memorial Buratti*; also the image of the "Eternity" is close to many other single statues of Putti, although her hairstyle shows an evolution in the style by becoming less and less bound to specific models. In addition to that, also the "Piangente" sculpture which sits on the cover of the unusual sandal-shaped sarcophagus is far away from the first statues depicting the same figure that Putti built. The artist indeed does not abandon the virtuosity of the drapery, but on the contrary, he emphasises it as he no longer feels the need of hiding his 'pathetic' figures under wide robes. So he tries to make the dress folds and the postures look more expressive, in order not to take the emotional impact away from the work. That very statue, seen from the side, while she wipes her tears away, acquires a meaning of intimacy that is in contrast with the power and strength conveyed by the sculptures representing the "Time" and the two lions.

Silvia Bellavista

*The only relevant difference is the addiction of a rich and saggy drape placed on the old man's head. Translation from the italian language thanks to the 2017/18 students of the Galvani high school in Bologna, supervised by the teacher Annamaria Marconi.