Christ the Redeemer
Christ the Redeemer is the second largest Art Deco statue in the world. It not only serves as a beacon to Christians of South America, but it also as a national identity to the citizens of Brazil, much in the same as the Statue of Liberty is a symbol of identity for Americans. It is composed of a combination of sandstone and reinforced concrete. It is the second largest in the world only recently surpassed by another statue of Christ in Poland. The suggestion for such a large depiction of Christ was first suggested by a Catholic priest in 1850 by the name Pedro Maria Boss. Construction didn’t start on it until 1922 and it took 9 years tell it was finished in 1933.
The statue poses Christ with his arms out allowing for the statue to posses multiple interpretations for viewers. The extension of his arms with his hands facing outward, allow viewers to either reflect upon the tenant that Christ accepts all with his love, or it serves to remind viewers of Christ’s sacrifice on the cross.
The statue has enjoyed many depictions in modern day pop culture but none more recent than its uses in the trailer for the movie 2012. The trailer shows the statue crumbling around itself as the world ends. The juxtaposition of the end of the world and the destruction of the statue can serve as multiple metaphors. I like to think that is relating the destruction of this man made idol by nature as a reflection that humans are powerless against the forces of nature.
Credit Wikipedia for image and date specific references.