I created a vision of David in my mind and simply carved away everything that was not David. — Michelangelo
The Sunday Scribbles is a weekly post sharing an excerpt from my travel journal. Check out the original post on how it began and why I believe parts of the journal are worth sharing.
•• Florence, Italy ••
“Yesterday morning, we woke up super early for a city walking tour. The highlight was seeing “David,” one of Michelangelo’s most iconic works. We waited for a half hour even with our skip-the-line passes, but for David, I would have waited much longer.
David was sculpted from one piece of white marble. The “Big Boy,” as our tour guide nicknamed him, is 17 feet tall. Many say Michelangelo sculpted the perfect man. And at first, you may believe it, as every part of him is so detailed — the veins running through his arms, abs on his stomach, muscles on his legs and back. Even his toenails are meticulous. My favorite thing about him? His eyes move with you as you circle his body. It’s enchanting.
David is naked, but it wasn’t Michelangelo’s intention for him to be exposed. Originally, he was to be wearing a skirt and placed on top of the Santa Maria del Fiore cathedral, which would mean people would be looking up at him from a far distance below. So that he would look proportional from so far away, Michelangelo purposely made David’s hands and upper body a bit larger than what would be proportional or anatomically correct. Michelangelo knew what he was doing.
But unfortunately, the Big Boy was too heavy for the church, so he was placed at ground level in one of Florence’s popular squares — the Piazza della Signoria — where he stayed until the 1870s. From there, he was moved to his current spot, the Galleria dell’Accademia. And how fortunate are we that we can spend less than 20 bucks to see one of Michelangelo’s most impressive masterpieces? A piece that took the 26-year-old over two years to sculpt out of ONE SINGLE PIECE OF MARBLE. A challenge that two artists were commissioned to complete but gave up. It’s so insanely impressive and absolutely fascinating.”
Your gifts lie in the place where your values, passions and strengths meet. Discovering that place is the first step toward sculpting your masterpiece, Your Life. — Michelangelo
What emotions have you felt when observing art? Are there any particular pieces that have moved you?
And finally, here are several photos of the famous “Big Boy.” These photos might be #NSFW. Not really, but maybe don’t try it 🙂