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Reflections...
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Aether
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Joined: Apr 12, 2008
Posts: 128
Location: Americas, Italy

PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2008 7:02 pm    Post subject: Reflections... Reply with quote

On Mother's Day I am reminded of how my mother instilled in me a love
for the history of art and in particular, of the work of Michelangelo.

"The Creation of Adam"

The Sistine Chapel ceiling begun by Michelangelo in 1509 was completed
at the end of 1512 and unveiled on January 1, 1513.

The trials and tribulations of Michelangelo during his painting of the ceiling are well documented by himself as well as others.

He has written:
“I’ ho gia’ fatto un gozzo in questo stento,
Come fa l’acqua a’gatti in Lombardia,
O ver altro paese che si sia,
Ch’ a forza ‘I ventre appicca sotto ‘l mento.
La barba al cielo, e la memoria sento
In sullo scrigno, e ‘il petto fo d’arpia…”

(“I have grown goiter by dwelling in this den-
As cats from stagnant streams in Lombardy,
Or in what other land they hap to be-
Which drives the belly close beneath my chin:
My beard turns up to heaven; my nape falls in,
Fixed on my spine: my breast- bone visibly
Grows like a harp…”)

Its most celebrated scene is “The Creation of Adam’ wherein we see God reaching out His finger to transfer the spark of life from Him to the first man.

Prior to the completion of the restoration of the Sistine Chapel ceiling I was fortunate enough to be invited by the Chief Restorer to see the work first-hand. We took an elevator to the top of the scaffold and stood a foot below the frescoes. He took my hand and placed it on the “fingers of God” and told me, “See how smooth the fresco is. Michelangelo has added marble dust to the plaster of paris mixture to make it like velvet.”

The event still resonates in my heart and mind. It was not only the touching of a work by Michelangelo but because the “Sistine Chapel is dear to the world’s faithful, not only for the masterpieces it contains but also because the role it plays in the life of the Church” as Pope John Paul II reminded us after the inauguration of the restored frescoes in 1999.

Aether

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Amici piu' di prima saremo;
Amici piu' di prima da lontano."

Aether

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Cathy
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Joined: Jul 10, 2007
Posts: 2681

PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2008 8:28 pm    Post subject: Re: Reflections... Reply with quote

Beautiful post Sofia! Thank you so much for sharing those precious memories. It must have been amazing standing so close to the greatest of masterpieces! How fortunate you are.

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nuccia
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Joined: Jul 10, 2007
Posts: 4364
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Sun May 11, 2008 8:46 pm    Post subject: Re: Reflections... Reply with quote

What a wonderful post! Is that the avatar that Carole uses?

Your mother taught you well..while I love both history and art, I don't know much about either. Sad
You're a very lucky woman... kiss

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nuccia
Italian Surname Database

Calabria Exchange
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Aether
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Location: Americas, Italy

PostPosted: Mon May 12, 2008 12:14 pm    Post subject: Re: Reflections... Reply with quote

Hi Nuccia,

Thanks - Art is always good for the soul! Yes, it is Carole's Avatar. Pity it is a poor reproduction, probably from a publication. I have a complete set of very good slides done after the restoration. Available from the Vatican.

Need anything about Art? I am here!

Abbracci, Sophia kiss

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Amici piu' di prima saremo;
Amici piu' di prima da lontano."

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Aether
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Joined: Apr 12, 2008
Posts: 128
Location: Americas, Italy

PostPosted: Mon May 12, 2008 1:28 pm    Post subject: Re: Reflections... Reply with quote

Thanks Cathy,

I greatly enjoy Art and its history, and love to share. I will be doing additional research on byzantine art in Calabria. The wealth of material available is a challenge, it will take time.
I have on this last trip (Sept. to Dec.) done some preliminary survey of various comunes. I drove up and down the mountain roads discovering!
Easy driving, most wonderful kind people! The small paesine - beautiful!
Going back soon. Will include your area!

Abbracci, Sophia kiss

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Amici piu' di prima saremo;
Amici piu' di prima da lontano."

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