Saturday, June 16, 2007

leonardo


How I love this... The canon-breaking John the Baptist... Look how androgynous! How glad he is. How gay! How everything opposite of how we picture St. John (gaunt, starved, raggedy). I'm enthralled by this image. It may be my favorite work of art. Why is he so happy?! What makes this creature so complete? Perfectly male and female, perfectly in the present and in all time, perfectly childlike and somehow wiseman-mysterious. All opposites marry in him. And the sign... The sign! This moved me to tears in Paris... I was doing the requisite walk-about-the-Louvre. And this stopped me and and sucked me in. I didn't just think, "how pretty / how strange / how ambiguous." That lasted a moment. But then I thought, this is exactly what it's like. Somebody in the 16th century painted exactly what loving Christ feels like. It's that reckless. And that horribly individual, and personal, and intimate. Christ / God / the Tao / the divine is in all, even in the most fleshily despicable. Look what a horrid John the Baptist. Really. Look how unsaintly. From a religious point of view. But look how FULL of divine love and light. How perversely full of divine love. I'm drunk with this image.

4 Comments:

Blogger Gaetan said...

He looks like this probably because he was holy. People often have this shine about them when they have been holy...you know what I mean :)???

June 17, 2007 at 12:19 PM  
Blogger wild murdocks said...

Pointing upwards, ever upwards. It's amazing how he looks lit from within.

June 21, 2007 at 8:54 PM  
Blogger ingrid m. said...

J'adore ton blog! Tiens moi au courrant avec tes fiançailles!!

June 25, 2007 at 9:15 PM  
Blogger mimi said...

um, dear people, i just found out "fiançailles" means engagement – i assure you there is none such; i simply posted on ingrid's blog telling her of a happy internet romance (she is of the skeptical antropologist variety).

alina, thank you for commenting – i love you!

gaetan, i do (know).

June 27, 2007 at 12:41 AM  

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