Sculptures Of David Essay Research Paper From

Sculptures Of David Essay, Research Paper

From 1430 to 1623A.D., four sculptures of the Biblical David were created. From

the master artists Bernini, Donatello, Michelangelo, and Verrocchio came the

most famous David?s of the world. Even though infinitely many were made, these

surpass the others to become marvels that will live forever. The earliest of the

David?s, is the work of Donatello(c.1430). This magnificent work is a

life-size, nude, bronze, figure of David. The sculpture is portraying the scene

after David has cut off the head of Goliath. His foot is raised on the severed

head in a stance of contropposto. His sword is in the right hand with the stone

in the left. This very smooth and natural looking sculpture was originally part

of Medici courtyard and is the only David of the four created for a private

collection. There are a few symbolic ingredients to this David. The style of the

figure refers to antiquity for the balance and composition of the nude. Energy

in the sculpture animates the emotions and is a new technique used in this

David, once again showing qualities from antiquity. This energy is not used in

the other figures. In addition, Donatello?s David is said to host homosexual

overtones, in the feministic appearance of the body and the stance. Overall,

this version of the biblical hero is elegantly designed and the originality is

fascinating. Verrocchio?s David (c.1473-75A.D.) greatly differs from those of

the other artists?. This statue was commissioned by the Medici family, like

that of Donatello?s. However, it was created for public display. It was in the

Palazzo Vecchio, where it gained almost a republican or city-related meaning

similar to the reputation that the David of Donatello gained, after it was also

moved to the same site. The similarity stops here. The proudness shows that the

hero was well capable of slaying the giant where Donatello?s shows almost no

emotion. The explicitness of the emotion contrasts greatly with the sensualness

of Donatello?s. Verrocchio?s is fully clothed in elegant armor when

Michelangelo?s and as well as Donatello?s were vulnerable in their nudity.

In Verrocchio?s sculpture, David carries a small sword in one hand and his

other is on his hip confidently. This figure shows a nice S-curve and a stance

of contropposto. Standing above the head of the giant, the sculpture takes place

after the slaying of Goliath. The facial expression show triumph and most of all

confidence. Therefore, this work shows psychological implications. However, it

was meant to be more appreciated for its exceptional bronze sheen. The gigantic

David by Michelangelo (c.1501-04A.D.) is an unquestionable masterpiece. It was

originally commissioned as a decoration for the Florence Cathedral. Since the

sculpture was so majestic, it was decided to be displayed in a closer, more

visible area. It was finally moved in front of Piazza della Signoria, where it

would replace a sculpture of Donatello?s. This David is a full nude that shows

David before battle. The face is in profile; he has a slingshot in the left hand

and a stone in the right. The face shows extreme emotion which pulls it away

from the classical genre. The design and stance of the figure has a confidence

and arrogance that matched that of its creator, Michelangelo. This version of

the hero was looked to as a potent symbol in Florence, resembling the Biblical

beliefs along with the fusion of civic beliefs. This is very unlike the

symbolism of Donatello?s. The nudity symbolizes that David?s platonic love

and belief in God protected him. Michelangelo?s David is an incredible

representation of both the Bible story, in that it closely follows the

scripture, and reason, in the references to Greek philosophy. Thus also

symbolizing that reason and faith (Christianity) can coexist. Finally,

Bernini?s David (c.1623A.D.) conquers all in the expression of emotion. This

public sculpture has a face full of determination and struggling. The

exaggerated S-curve of the figure shows movement as David is throwing the stone.

None of the other three sculptures give insight during the battle with the

giant. Also, Bernini?s David is clothed in a tunic and is carrying a pouch of

some sort. He?s holding the rock and slingshot as in action while his feet are

firmly planted in the ground. This is certainly the most dramatic and realistic

portrayal of David. Bernini?s objective was not like the other artists of the

David?s. His objective was drama. The symbolism is that of moments in his

lifetime. An example of this would be the harp at his feet, depicting his

abandonment of his music when he went to fight Goliath. The armor at his feet

showed that his sure feelings and belief in God protected him. And the slingshot

symbolized the triumph and victory over the giant. This work is one that gives

the viewer insight into the mind of David and takes them to the scene. Each

interpretation is interesting and has a slight mystery attached. All of the four

David?s excel in a particular area. Bernini?s David has the most emotional

appeal, where Donatello?s has the most serene and innocent qualities.

Verrocchio?s displays mighty confidence and Michelangelo?s David best fits

the Biblical David, in my opinion. Nevertheless, each sculpture will grab your

attention, leave you wordless and in awe.


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