Calvary Cemetery Columbarium

Copyright St. Louis Patina -2601

A weekend ago I officially found the weirdest place in the city of St. Louis: the Columbarium of Calvary Cemetery.

The two above bronze statues guard one of the entrances to the building, one with a rather uncomfortable depiction of a priest with his hands on a young boy’s shoulders.

The interior, to paraphrase Rob Powers, is meant to be homey, but ends up being just the opposite, with long, marble clad walls and the still ubiquitous bug zappers (do they really need that many?).

The rotunda, seen above, is likewise a strange mix of Modernism and Early Christian Revival mosaics, creating a strange serene space at the end of the second floor. The strange statue upon a complex base of multi-colored stone anchors the first floor lobby.

Below is one of the main side aisles that hold the various columbaria for the dead.

The chapel is absolutely beautiful, even with the missing altarpiece which can be seen in situ at Built St. Louis. The stain glass is stunning, and surrounded by the eerie silence, sublime.

Below, the two pictures illustrate the dramatically different light effects of photographing what appears to be a Raising of Lazarus with and without a flash.

Update: This sculpture group is in fact from St. Liborius.

Above and below is one of the strange statues of the evangelists arranged around the first floor lobby, carved in what seems to be blue soapstone. The effects of the different levels of polish on the statue creates an interesting effect.

Calvary Cemetery holds many interesting discoveries. See additional photographs at Built St. Louis.

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