Cosimo Cavallaro, ‘My Sweet Lord’, Chocolate, 72″ X 72″ X 24″

A while back we had a posting about a Jesus sculpture made of chocolate on this forum and the discussion that ensued was quite lively. Today is All Saints day and to commemorate the occasion Cosimo Cavallaro, (the artist behind the controversial Sweet Jesus) decided to build upon the original theme by adding a phalanx of chocolate Saints around a prone Jesus. I went by to look at the exhibit over at the Proposition yesterday. A delicious smell of chocolate pervaded the air in the gallery and if I were blindfolded, I might have guessed that I was in some kind of a Belgian chocolatier’s atelier. The atmosphere was almost church-like and had it not been for the fact that the chocolate Jesus sculpture was nude, this could pass for a religious tableau. The saints themselves were carved very intricately and were housed in little glass cases (the saints were fully clothed). 

This show is very different from the first which consisted of a single sculpture of the nude Jesus. That seemed to incite more controversy than any critical dialogue. The setup in this exhibit is a bit more intriguing – eight saints on pedestals that are connected to each other with white nylon cord encircling a nude Jesus supine on an embroidered silken round table. 

The nylon rope stumped me – was it meant to signify that the saints were in some kind of a ‘circle of trust’ or was it meant to keep curious onlookers from approaching too close to the prone Jesus… 


Cosimo Cavallaro, ‘Saint Jude’, Chocolate, 6″ X 12″ X 6″, ed. 400

Also, I was not sure why Jesus was lying down as opposed to being shown in the crucified pose? Was the weight of controversy of the first so much that he is forced onto his back…? One does not know the answers to these questions, but the exhibit was surely an interesting one. 

Of course, Cavallaro is best known for his quirky work with food as art: Efforts in the past include repainting a Manhattan hotel room in melted mozzarella, spraying five tons of pepper jack cheese on a Wyoming home, and laying about 300 pounds of processed ham on a four-poster bed. 

I will be interested to know your take on this…