Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Ghiberti's Gates of Paradise

Smithsonian Magazine is running a fascinating and beautiful article on Ghiberti's mid-fifteenth-century gold-gilded bronze door-panels depicting scenes from the Hebrew Bible. "Combining a goldsmith's delicacy with a foundryman's bravura, sculptor Lorenzo Ghiberti condensed the Old Testament into ten panels to produce one of the defining masterpieces of the Italian Renaissance," the article reminds us. The ten panels are currently being completely restored, and some of them are on tour in the US. To read more, click here. I'll copy below two of the panels:



This first depicts the creation. You can see here how the panels contain multiple scenes of action, conveying a sense of narrative. On the left bottom, God draws Adam into life. In the center, God draws Eve out of Adam's side. In the upper left, the couple consider the fruit of the forbidden tree.




Some consider this second panel one of Ghiberti's proudest achievements. It depicts the story of Jacob stealing Esau's blessing.

2 Comments:

Blogger Peter Carey said...

Thanks for this post...it brings me back to my junior year abroad in Florence, when I walked by the doors of paradise nearly every day ... and much of the art there had a profound effect on me; bringing me "back" to church in a new, richer, deeper way...good to remember that step along the journey...

My prayers are with the Hornes and the entire VTS community in this difficult time,

Peace,

Peter

Tue Nov 27, 10:40:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Morgan said...

Great article which the Old Testament into ten panels to produce one of the defining masterpieces of the Italian Renaissance," the article reminds us. The ten panels are currently being completely restored, and some of them are on tour in the US. Thanks a lot for posting.

Sun Jul 15, 08:18:00 AM GMT-5  

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