Biografia di Roberto Joppolo

Biography of Roberto Joppolo 

Roberto Joppolo was born in Siena on 1939 and he’s currently been living and working in Viterbo.

He began his artistic career at the end of the 1960. His artworks attracted immediately critics and collectors’ attention and he participated to several group exhibitions. In this period he was part of several arts circles, he received many awards, and signed his first important arts commission: the Doors to the marble shrine of Andrea Bregno in the basilica of St. Maria della Quercia, Viterbo (1976), immediately followed by the creation of St. Maximilian M. Kolbe bronze statue (1983), exhibited in Saint Peter square during his canonization and blessed by Pope John Paul II. Thanks to this last artwork (created in four copies for Poland, Japan and America), he began his career of international artist.

In 1984, he began his tribute to Assisi town with the bronze monument Parents of St. Francis, installed in Chiesa Nuova square. In 1986 he was commissioned by the Franciscan Community of Sacred Convent to create the Chapel of Prayer liturgical furnishings, in the Lower Basilica of St. Francis. Roberto Joppolo was the first contemporary artist to enter that sacred place, and he received many other arts commissions in the next years.

In 1989 his Prudentissima Virgin, made in Carrara white marble, was positioned along the main A1 highway (Orte exit) and blessed by Pope John Paul II.

Since 1999, he received many other prestigious arts commissions: the Cathedral of Messina Main Door, the Amerigo Vespucci Bust in Brasilia, The Tree of Humanity in the Vatican Gardens, The Seed that Sprouts in the F.A.O. headquarter of Rome, and the Door of Peace for St. Catherine Church in Bethlehem, installed at the entrance of the Nativity Cave on Christmas 2003.

Other important artworks are: the Bronze Door at the Castelnuovo Berardenga Sanctuary, the Door  at S.Ansano in the province of Siena, the Gate of Sufferings for the S. Maria Assunta Church in Vejano (VT), the Door of Light inaugurated at the Cathedral of Viterbo in 2005 while, in 2006, to mark the 40th anniversary of the Florence flood, a bronze panel installed in the Basilica of Santa Croce in memory of Pope Paul VI visit on 1966 Christmas Eve. In 2008, again in the Lower Basilica of St. Francis in Assisi, a bronze statue of the Saint in the Giotto Chapel of Mary Magdalene was installed at the entrance to the crypt that houses the Saint’s remains.

Although Joppolo has moved in intellectual and fashionable artistic circles since he was a young man, his creativity has never been tied to a particular style or movement. Many personal exhibitions have attested to his great success. In particular,

·  the prestigious retrospective exhibition in Venice at the New Prisons’ Palace in 1999.

·  the strictly personal exhibition “Profane” in the historic rooms of Castel Sant'Angelo (Rome) in 2005 (presented by Claudio Strinati, Superintendent of the Roman Museum).

·  the second solo exhibition in Rome, inaugurated in 2007, in the beautiful setting of the Theatre Museum Burchard, home of the SIAE; in recognition of the extraordinary creativity of an artist already conscious of his expressive capabilities, prof. Claudio Strinati defined him as “one of the few artists of our time to have dealt with the major theme of religious commissions with energy and determination, without ever losing sight of the deeper significance of his style and his personal exploration into the vast world of figurative representation”.

·  In 2008, in the splendid setting of the Monumental Complex of Santa Croce in Florence he exhibited for two months more than 50 sculptures, some monumental, achieving great success with both critics and spectators.

·  In 2009 he was commissioned to complete, through the creation of bronze side doors, the triptych for the facade of Viterbo Cathedral which received the blessing of His Holiness Benedict XVI. In the same year he was invited to take part, with other 260 carefully selected international artists, to the event '"Meet the Artists" organized by Pope Benedict XVI in the Sistine Chapel.

·  When the same Pope announced the interreligious meeting on 27 October 2011 in Assisi, Joppolo was invited to mark the big event. For the occasion, he made 2 large bronze bas-reliefs and the design for the plate of the cover book “Pilgrims of Truth, Pilgrims of Peace”, given to all the world religious leaders. In 2011 he was appointed as professor of sculpture, teaching at the Academy of Fine Arts “Lorenzo da Viterbo”.

·  In 2012 his prestigious bronze altar with embossed and engraved silver plates was presented and placed in the center of the Santa Croce Basilica chancel in Florence.

·  In 2013 he was invited to organize a big anthology exhibition in the Palace of Popes in Viterbo (Conclave room) where for more than two months he exhibited more than 60 artworks.

·  In 2014, his artworks were exposed in the restored and huge Palace Chigi-Albani in Soriano nel Cimino (Viterbo)

·  In 2015, in occasion of the Extraordinary Jubilee, he felt the need to concentrate all his work on representing the dramatic events linked to welcoming, solidarity and ecumenism. The most representative work of the entire project is "The Mosaic of Humanity", a sculpture in iron and ceramic in the shape of a Latin cross, made in three copies, and exposed in three symbolic places (Lampedusa, S. Josè of Costa Rica and Viterbo). It received also Pope Francis blessing in the Vatican on February 15th 2017

·  In 2017, the artist addresses the issues of cultural dimension in relation to the migration phenomenon, with the organization in Dudelange (Luxembourg) of an exhibition entitled "In Cammino". The event took place in the spaces of the C.D.M.H as a first stage of a traveling exhibition.

·  In the same year, he completed two important works: a large corten steel sculpture dedicated, by the Municipality of Orte (VT), to the cinema forerunner Filoteo Alberini, and the bronze side door of S. Maria Assunta church in Vejano (VT).


The Master's creativity and production continue to be enriched with new productions and expressive genres, confirming the artist's natural, constant and resolute research of new creative sensations.

Its paintings and sculptures (even those on big canvases) are created by using several materials (marble, bronze, silver, steel, copper) and peculiar working techniques (as raKu for ceramics artworks, or laser cut for steel artworks). This made him widely considered as a 360° “contemporary” artist,


He’s a Master of materials and aware of his creative tactility skills. His polyhedral and creative activity developed during the years into new expressive genres, as a confirmation of his natural and constant research of new creative sensations.


His permanent museum in Viterbo is rich of more than 500 artworks of all genres, which represent the history of his creations and his creative eclecticism.


These peculiarities make of Roberto Joppolo one of the main contemporary artists in the Ecclesiastic and non Ecclesiastic world; his artworks represent now important monuments of the Italian Arts History. Due to this mature experience and solid expressive vitality Master Joppolo is considered today one of the most qualified artists of the Italian cultural scene.


During his career, Roberto Joppolo has been awarded with many important honors: Great Officier of the Italian Republic, knight of S. Silvestro in Vatican, Honor Member of the Carabinieri, ad Honorem Academic of the Arts Academy “Lorenzo da Viterbo”, Paul Harris Fellow of Rotary club Viterbo, honor citizen of Bassano in Teverina (VT), honor citizen of Celleno (VT) and holder of the asteroid No. 212500 named "RobertoJoppolo" by the Minor Planets Center.



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