The devil may well wear Prada, but at a biennial exhibition of sacred art in Italy, a statue of the Virgin Mary is donning Louis Vuitton, local newspaper Il Centro reported on Thursday.
The veil traditionally covering the Virgin's head bears the French luxury brand's trademark "LV" logo in golden letters decorating bags -- many of them counterfeit -- around the world.
Francesco De Molfetta, 31, said he created the work to "denounce a society based on the cult of appearance through the use of a brand that represents the search for ephemeral happiness."
"This new way of interpreting sacred art is along the lines of the famous work presented (in 1999 in Venice by Maurizio) Cattelan that showed a wax icon depicting Pope John Paul II being crushed by a meteor," the curator of the biennial Giuseppe Bacci told Il Centro.
"It is a way to hit the visitors' unconscious," he added.
The biennial is held at Isola del Gran Sasso in the central region of Abruzzo.
Milan native De Molfetta's works have been on show in Tokyo, at the T20 contemporary art gallery of Murcia Spain and at the museum of Besancon in France.