On Ivan Mestrovic

On Ivan Mestrovic
Tired Bard, Ivan mestrovic

The work of Ivan Mestrovic (1883-1962) adorns the campus of the University of Notre Dame as so many jewels embedded throughout many aspects of the ND campus. Two of my favorites are the Women at Jacob’s Well, near O’Shaughnessy Hall (see it here) and the Pieta, in the Basilica of the Sacred Heart (see it here and here)

They are works which invite one to prayer; their constant presence on campus serve as landmarks for students and alumni of the great moments of encounter with Jesus. As I mentioned above, Pope John paul II selects the story about the encounter between Jesus and the Woman at the Well as an exemplar of the invitation to a life greater than we can even imagine.

As an undergraduate at Notre Dame I would often stop by these works for moments of silent meditation. The Woman at the Well stands by O’Shaughnessy Hall, which was the main academic building for Arts and Sciences in times past. One can walk right up to the well. One can see and hear the encounter — “You do not know the gift of God. You do not know who asks you for water.” The work continues to call out to the heady academics of ND.

The Pieta is in tthe first chapel directly to the right of the main altar. The statue was loaned to Notre Dame by the former Croatian artist-in-residence. Its whispering wounds still call hearts to life.

For more on Mestrovic see the note by the Center for Ethics and Culture, here.  And also see the Ivan mestrovic Memorial Museum site, here.

I love the Tired Bard, shown above. I think of Maritain and Dawson, O’Malley and Evans of Notre Dame, and Pope John Paul II in his last years..

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