Sunday, September 16, 2007

Michaelangelo's Pieta

One of my favorite statues I have encountered so far has been this one. It is beautiful. They say that the face of the man holding up Jesus is the face of Michaelangelo. When I viewed this sculpture through my camera, it glowed. Furthermore, when I zoomed in on the face of Michaelangelo he stared right back at me into my soul.

It was an one of his last sculptures, and he had the intention of it decorating his tomb. However, he smashed the sculpture because a leg had broken off and the marble was defective. He gave the pieces to his servant who later sold them to a wealthy family he preserved the statue. It is now in Florence Cathedral Museum. He also did not portray any precise historical moment; instead he made it a personal admonishment to himself.
Unlike his other pieta in the Basilica of St. Peter, here Nicodemus has taken the place of the Madonna and she, with Mary Magdalen now does what the angels did, supports the body. There is no longer only the mother, but three people are now surrounding the body, and Christ's deadness is expressed more effectively by the falling movement in which he is caught halfway. The figures are not isolated from the emaciated dead body: they are blended, in their fear, desperation and pain, into a single setting. The bodies are denied any independent power and there is nothing to point to a higher meaning of this suffering, such as redemption.

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