Sunday, 30 March 2008

Louvre Part III

I finally got back to the Louvre to see some of the stuff I hadn't seen in my last two visits, in particular the large Italian, Spanish and French paintings (including the Mona Lisa). The statue to the left (not a painting I know) has to be my favourite piece at the Louvre, the Winged Victory of Samothrace. I've probably already put a photo up before, but I really do love it, and how it is situated too on the landing of some stairs so you are walking up to this headless woman who looks like she is about to take-off.

One thing I noticed on this trip to the Louvre is the advent of the digital video camera. I mean digital cameras are so passe now, everyone has one hanging off their wrist, myself included, but there are certainly starting to be more of the video cameras. Honestly I couldn't think of a worse experience than being forced to sit through someone's holiday video which included footage of their aimless wanderings through an art gallery, complete with tops of heads, out of focus art and people walking across your shot. Maybe it is some new form of CIA torture that they are trialling, seeing as how that waterboarding thing is now out, and they need to get enough footage for a proper test.

I hadn't been a big fan of this 16th-18th century art, I don't know why, I just thought it was a bit boring, but going back this time I think I was able to appreciate it a bit more. I don't know maybe I was in the right mood, or I'm getting older, or this style of art is like olives or horseradish sauce and so it takes a while to acquire a taste for it. What really blew me away though were just the colours of the paintings. These things were 400-500 years old and yet the blues and reds were still so vibrant, obviously the artists were incredibly talented as well which certainly adds to the pleasure of the colours.

I liked this painting of the Virgin Mary appearing before some saint because it looks like once she died, or rather Assumpted, she got her own little band of child labourers who were then forced to carry her wherever she wanted to go. I guess this is a consequence of Mary entering heaven with her body and soul intact, so I suppose there is then some heavenly decree that she doesn't get a set of wings, at least they are consistent.

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