AMOR, 1998, by Robert Indiana (American, born 1928). Polychrome aluminum painted red and blue. 72 x 72 x 36 inches. © 2015 Morgan Art Foundation. Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
In celebration of Pope Francis’s visit to Philadelphia, Robert Indiana’s colorful sculpture “AMOR” has been installed atop the Museum’s famous steps.To honor Pope Francis on the occasion of his visit to the United States, the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Association for Public Art are pleased to present Robert Indiana’s monumental sculpture AMOR (1998) on the Museum’s East Terrace. The colorful, six-foot-high sculpture overlooks the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, site of the public papal mass that culminated the World Meeting of Families 2015, the world’s largest Catholic gathering of families. AMOR—meaning “love” in both Pope Francis’s native Spanish and the Church’s traditional Latin—stands at one end of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, facing Indiana’s iconic LOVE sculpture at John F. Kennedy Plaza (affectionately called Love Park) at the other end. It was unveiled on Tuesday, September 22, before the start of the World Meeting of Families Congress, held every three years in a different city. Robert Indiana originally conceived the celebrated LOVE image through a series of paintings in 1965 and as editions of LOVE sculptures a year later. His masterpiece quickly gained widespread recognition and public acclaim, entering major private and public collections around the world, most significantly the City of Philadelphia. Described by the artist as a one-sentence poem, Indiana’s LOVE has become one of the rare icons of modern art that resonate with large and diverse audiences. Indiana created the Spanish/Latin version of the sculpture, AMOR, in 1998, in response to the changing demographics of the United States and a desire to speak to his fellow citizens. The sculpture is on loan from the Morgan Art Foundation, courtesy of Simon and Marc Salama-Caro, who are dedicated to preserving and promoting Robert Indiana’s artistic legacy.