Wednesday, July 8, 2015

florence, italy - the david.

our number one, must-see priority in florence was to see michelangelo's david. we heard that if you get there early enough in the day you can land yourself a pretty good spot in line for standby tickets (we were originally planning on buying tickets online, but they were sold out until the middle of july! yikes the first). we arrived in florence around 10:30 am, made our way to the accademia, & discovered...that there was a nearly four hour wait time in the standby line. yikes the second. we ended up going with a tour group that was advertising nearby, & it was SO WORTH IT. tickets were only a few euros more than they would have been, we had an excellent tour guide, &, most importantly, we were able to enter the accademia almost immediately. our tickets were scanned, our cute tour guide said, "& now the moment you have all been wanting" (english is her second language) norah was gurgling pleasantly in her stroller as we came around the corner, and.......

...there he was

in one of my several humanities classes as an undergrad (i minored in humanities, which might just tip the scale at being both the most enjoyable field of study while offering the least amount of direct career opportunities post-graduation. i can admit it!), the professor took an incredibly fast-paced approach to inundating us with as much beautiful & culturally significant artwork, philosophy, literature, music, etc. etc. as possible. we'd all be sitting there furiously trying to keep up in our note-taking as she gleefully whipped through her excellently curated slides (what is it with professors loving their slides? when ben makes powerpoint presentations for his various conferences talks, he agonizes over each page like it's the final game of some incredibly important & intense sportsballs match. he does want to be a professor someday, so i suppose his love of slides is a good sign?). ANYWAY, wow tangent, when it came to michelangelo's david? this professor spent an ENTIRE class period on the guy. that's when i realized just how big a deal this work of art is.

seeing the david was one of the most powerful experiences with art i've ever had. that moment we turned the corner & i saw the sculpture down at the end of the hall, all lit up from the natural sunlight coming through the windows above it, i felt all sorts of tingles & chills & goosebumps. "now, nobody cry!" our tour guide joked...but for me it was A CLOSE ONE. 

(i took a lotta pictures. as you can tell.)

me creeping on this girl who is tooooootally taking a picture of david's goliath:

i came into the gallery having heard from lots of people that the david is incredibly, incredibly large. even so, i was still unprepared for just. how. ENORMOUS. it is. these pictures don't communicate its gigantic size well at ALL.

as you can see, norah was equally affected by the david's beauty. that hand to her forehead: "the fact that this masterful representation of the standing heroic male nude was crafted from a single piece of marble, & by an artist not even 30 years old, is nearly inconceivable!"

giving norah a better view:

one day she'll appreciate this, maybe:

& a slightly less crowded hallway, as we finally dragged ourselves away:

on our way out, we spotted this in an outside courtyard. cool, right? 

oh, the david. one of the best experiences of my life. powerful, impressive, & beautiful. ben! let's go again! for now, though, at least in the world of this blog, it's on to cinque terre!

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