The Kalo Foundation/Iannelli Studios Heritage Center of Park Ridge welcomed the Sisters of Charity of the Blessed Virgin Mary in March to view the studio’s 11-foot statue of the Madonna. The visit was facilitated by alumnae of Chicago’s former Immaculata High School, which the statue once graced.
The Madonna was designed in 1922 by sculptor Alphonso Iannelli and commissioned by architect Barry Byrne, who was hired by the BVM nuns to design Immaculata.
After the sisters closed the school and sold the building in 1981, the sculpture was removed by the purchasers and donated to the Smart Museum at the University of Chicago.
It lay in storage at the museum until Immaculata alumnae learned that it was there. The women jump-started a drive to have the Smart Museum donate the Madonna to The Kalo Foundation and to gather funds toward its moving and restoration.
The Madonna was professionally moved to The Kalo Foundation in December of 2013, restored in July of 2014 and permanently mounted. Donations are welcome to cover the remaining cost of the move and restoration. (www.kalofoundation.org)