Statue of Christ on the Mount of Olives

In 2010, the Gothic statue of Christ on the Mount of Olives, which until then had been located in a special chapel near the Church of St. James the Greater in Jihlava, was restored. It was in a significantly dilapidated state, and it was decided that after restoration, it would be placed inside the Church of St. James until it could be moved to a protected site at its original location.

Condition of the statue before restoration.

Restoration of the Statue of Christ on the Mount of Olives

On October 27, 2010, the restored statue "Christ on the Mount of Olives," part of an outdoor chapel next to the Church of St. James the Greater in Jihlava, was temporarily installed. The return of the statue to its original place is conditioned upon the complete renovation and security of the chapel.

The tradition of depicting Christ on the Mount of Olives originated from the Passion plays in southern Germany. This custom later spread to our region, especially to Moravia. Olive Mountains began to be constructed in separate chapels on the exteriors of churches.

The Jihlava statue "Christ on the Mount of Olives" dates from between 1480-1490. It consists of statues of Christ, John the Evangelist, James the Greater, and Peter. The statues are made of medium-coarse sandstone and their height does not exceed 152 cm.

  • Restorer: Academic sculptor Petr Váňa
  • Implementation: 2008 – 2010
  • Reg. N. ÚSKP: 101725
Financial contributors to the restoration included
  • The Royal Canonry of Premonstratensians at Strahov
  • The city of JihlavaThe Vysočina Region
Condition before restoration

Until 1966, the statue was located in an outdoor chapel at the Church of St. James in Jihlava. Due to its poor condition, it was then moved to an indoor chapel of the Church of St. James. In 2008, based on a restoration survey, the restoration of the statue began.

The statues were heavily salt-laden. The stone material was compromised by corrosion caused by long-term moisture exposure. The stone surface was covered with numerous deposits. In many places, the sculpture's modeling was chipped off.

Restoration process

The statue group was transferred to the studio of Mr. Sculptor Váňa. An extensive restoration survey was conducted. Layers of dust and deposits were removed, followed by consolidation of the damaged stone parts. Then, the gradual removal of non-original color layers to the underlying white base began. Some parts had been previously modeled with filler. However, this modeling disrupted the original plasticity of the statues, so these parts were removed and subsequently reconstructed. Similarly, the missing parts of the clasped hands of Christ and the left hand of Peter were modeled. Finally, a unifying surface color retouch was applied. Sandstone bases were made under the statues, allowing for better handling and protection from bottom moisture.

Summary and final condition after restoration

The Jihlava statue of Christ on the Mount of Olives and the Mount of Olives from Morice represent a significant example of late Gothic sculpture in Moravia. The Jihlava statue is categorized among the works of Pogerhaert with features of the late 15th-century dynamic style.

Through sensitive restoration efforts, the integrity of the statue was preserved, allowing for its original religious use. The original Gothic polychromy was not preserved to an extent that would allow for its reconstruction.


Condition before restoration.
Restoration outcome.
Restoration outcome.
Restoration outcome.