The latest acquisition at Bishop Auckland is an astonishing, immense Neapolitan presepe which is on display in Niall McLaughlin’s building, due to be turned later in the year into a Faith Museum.

There are no doubt others in Naples. There is a large collection of crèche figures in the Metropolitan Museum which are displayed every Christmas. Likewise in Chicago. And there’s another in the Carnegie Museum in Pittsburgh. But it is hard to imagine anything more elaborate than this colossal installation of biblical figures:-

The Nativity itself is dimly distinguishable in the general melée:

Otherwise, it is a fascinating mixture of complex pandemonium:-

And beautifully modelled individual figures:-

It’s quite something !


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