This was more impressive for me than seeing the David. Truly. As iconic as David is, as large, as expressive, as weird as it is. Yep, it’s a bit weird; some parts seem out of proportion, intentional, it’s said, for the vantage point from which it was supposed to be seen. And it just seems awkwardly too big.
But the Galleria dell’ Accademia has several unfinished sculptures, and they impress the sense that yes, indeed, Michelangelo was “finding” the figure that was trapped in the stone. It seems to be struggling to emerge. And you can see all levels of finish, from quite rough and blocky to silky smooth.
We saw these unfinished pieces in the hallway that approaches the David, and I kept lingering there, because it felt almost magical. I wanted to turn around and ask him something. But he wasn’t there. And the David (and the stream of visitors) kept pulling me. So after some time with David, I returned to these partly-realized figures, marveling. It was a good trip for marveling.