Sermon on the Mount

Joseph Chaumet, detail of Via Vita, 1894-1904. Sculpture,  Musée eucharistique du Hiéron, Paray-le-Monial, France.

Joseph Chaumet (1852-1928) was a French decorative artist who controlled the House of Chaumet, an aristocratic jewelry house in Paris. Chaumet was a master of the Belle Époque (“beautiful era”), a period of optimism and peace before the start of World War I. Chaumet’s crowning achievement, the Via Vita sculpture consists of 138 gold and ivory figures representing scenes from the life of Christ. Shown here is a detail of the Sermon on the Mount. The sculpture is made of precious materials including gold, ivory, silver gilt, rock crystal, platinum, diamonds, rubies, marble, alabaster, and jasper, all set on a gilt bronze base. France declared the work a National Treasure in 2000.

Joseph Chaumet, detail of Via Vita, Sculpture, late 19th century. Musee eucharistique du Hieron, Paray-le-Monail, France.

A message usually delivered orally by a religious leader.

A collection of Jesus' moral sayings, including the Beatitudes and several parables, recorded in Matt 5-7.

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