Tuesday, August 9, 2016

the school of athens

Beautiful Raphael, the bold and ambitious, still staring back at us from within his masterpiece, nearly lost among the bustling bodies of great philosophers— rooms away from the work he so admired, painted by his bitter rival. It is said that when Raphael sneaked into the Sistine Chapel to catch a glimpse of Michelangelo's progress one night, he was so taken by what he had seen that he decided to include a portrait of the temperamental artist within his own fresco, front and center. While others are engaged in fierce debates or study texts, Michelangelo, representing the Greek philosopher Heraclitus, seems adrift in thought— his body powerful beneath his smock, as muscular as the figures in his magnificent ceiling.

It seems cruel that Raphael was only given thirty-seven years on this earth, but oh how much he managed to give us in that short amount of time...

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