Jubileum is an artistic reportage of the 2015–16 Jubilee of Mercy, the historic celebration of the Catholic Holy Year proclaimed by Pope Francis and centered around St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. The Jubilee, held every 25 to 50 years since first instigated by Pope Boniface VIII in 1300, is a time of universal pardon and indulgence, where pilgrimshead to Rome to renew their faith.
Alessandra d’Urso and Alessandra Borghese gained privileged access to the Vatican to document the Jubilee, as a result of Borghese’s respected experience as a writer and journalist in the field. D’Urso’s photos depict the little-seen rituals and grand settings of the Church, for example Pope Francis opening the holy door of St. Peter’s, symbolic of the faithful’s path to salvation. Yet perhaps more importantly d’Urso captures the visual details and gestures that convey the authentic experience of pilgrimage and religious belief—the Pope’s shadow cast on a marble floor, rosary beads hanging from fingertips, shafts of sunlight in St. Peter’s. Borghese’s introduction and detailed captions complete the book, which in her words conveys the “inevitably dramaturgy that ties together Italian culture and Catholicism.”