Christ of the Abyss – San Fruttuoso, Italy - Atlas Obscura

Christ of the Abyss

San Fruttuoso, Italy

A sunken idol welcomes parishioners to Davy Jones' Locker. 


While figures of the divine and the decorative abound in densely populated areas, rarely do you see honored artistry in the middle of nowhere. The Christ of the Abyss statue in San Fruttuoso, Italy, hopes to change that in some small way.

The “Christ of the Abyss” is a bronze likeness of Jesus Christ made by Guido Galletti. It was placed upon the bottom of the Mediterranean Sea as an honor to Dario Gonzatt, the first Italian to use scuba diving gear. It was installed 17 meters under the waves in August of 1954, where it stays to this day. 

Similar statues have been placed underwater and aboveground all over the world, some as an homage to the original, others as mere tangential copycats. The original clay statue from which this first sculpture was cast is now in Ravenna, Italy’s National Museum of Underwater Activities. 

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