So many people have questioned the meaning behind this art work, some have said that the image behind the Pope here is a demon. But this isn’t true at all.
The sculpture is the work of an Italian artist Pericle Fazzini, who was contracted to design something for the modern auditorium. He decided to respond with The Resurrection which shows Christ rising from a nuclear-bomb crater, a work that was unveiled in 1977 by Pope Paul VI. During the obituary of the artist Fazzini, the Associated Press reported:
“Suddenly there came to me the idea of Christ preaching peace for 2,000 years and the place where he prayed for the last time: the olive grove of Gethsemane,” said Mr. Fazzini in a book about the work. “I had the idea of depicting Christ as if he were rising again from the explosion of this large olive grove, peaceful site of his last prayers. Christ rises from this crater torn open by a nuclear bomb; an atrocious explosion, a vortex of violence and energy”
The Resurrection is molded in red bronze and yellow brass and measures 66 feet by 23 feet by 10 feet.
Even if some people don’t like Mr. Fazzini’s depiction, there is no doubt that his work presents the resurrected Jesus, not a “serpent idol” or something demonic.
— Tom Nash