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Vatican mosaics to make North American debut

.- They’ve never left the Vatican — until now. Thirty-seven mosaics, depicting masterworks from the Renaissance to modern times, will be on display in New Orleans, from Jan. 28 to June 1, at the Catholic Cultural Heritage Center of the archdiocese.

The Exhibition of the Vatican Mosaic Studio is described by organizers as “an evolution of the human spirit as seen through mosaic art,” reported The Associated Press. The exhibit was to have opened in April but was delayed due to the effects Hurricane Katrina.

The Vatican studio is reportedly for its mosaics made of tiny bits of enamel, glass and stone, and so finely crafted that they look almost like paintings. In addition to producing and selling works to the public, it is also responsible for preserving St. Peter’s mosaics

According to the an AP report, the studio was founded in the 16th century, when Pope Gregory XIII brought expert mosaic craftsmen from Venice to Rome to decorate St. Peter's Basilica.

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