Christ Crowned with Thorns
Tomaso Bezzi (c. 1652-1729)
Mid-18th century, Polychrome wax
The presence of numerous almost identical wax versions in Reggio Emilia leads us to attribute this Christ Crowned with Thorns to a workshop active in this area. Rather than the better-known Bolognese waxworkers, one should look to Carpi, where two replicas of the waxwork are still preserved. An architect, stage designer, and theatre technician in Venice and later for the Estense court in Modena, Tomaso Bezzi was also a waxworker and kept a mask-making workshop in Venice. Tomaso Bezzi's documented wax works include an Ecce Homo (in the Cathedral of Carpi) and a San Francesco da Paola (in the Chiesa de SS. Crocifisso also in Carpi) and another recently identified Ecce Homo (in the Chiesa degli Scalzi in Venice).