June 14, 2016

Siena Duomo

The ceilings and the floors and the Donatello and Michelangelo were all vying for attention.  This time, the ceilings won.  All this famous art, and really, looking up and looking down were the wonders for me.  This looks like jewels, like precious metals, like 50 amazing compositions, like how in the world did they *do* this?  The church is the Duomo Santa Maria Assunta; this ceiling is in the Piccolomini Library, which is also full of stunning illuminated manuscripts.  This one building is a veritable feast of riches.

We are capable of great beauty — and great cruelty.  Wish that it were not so.  More cognitive dissonance.  But it’s so so so beautiful!  Glorious in composition and color, and I don’t even recall what it portrays.  On some level, it really doesn’t matter?

2 thoughts on “June 14, 2016”

  1. I remember looking straight up to a similar ceiling in St Louis, but probably smaller in scope. It is amazing. How did they build all that scaffolding? How did they glue all those little pieces on? Did they plan it and then climb up with a bunch of pieces with instructions of what went next?

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