Hello, there ! Renxkyoko Iglesias here !
How many times have I started a post with these words? According to WP, more than 274 times. With just 1 or 2 posts a month, I don;t know where WP got that figure. Okay, I think I know…. it’s from where I first started blogging here, in October , 2010. And I did post almost everyday back then…… mindless, stupid posts, like so…. ” Hi, Renxkyoko Iglesias here ! It’s 2 AM right now and guess what I’m doing ? Doing the laundry , that’s what. So, how’s your day ? Tut, tut, goodbye ! ” And the one below is the worst…. by the way, it’s dated June 2010…. that was written on another blogsite that was transferred , lock, stock and barrel to WP.
Posted June 28, 2010 by renxkyoko in Uncategorized. 2 Comments | Edit
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No wonder that for a loooong time, I only had 2 or 3 loyal and captured readers, lol. Who would read such crap ? The first time I saw another commenter on my blog, aside from my loyalists, of course, I was like, ” Waaaaa ! They can read my blog ? ” All the while, I thought that was my private space . I was such a dumb-belle…. still one, though, he he he.
Well, then, consider the above my anniversary post.
This is the second part of my Part 7 tour of Rome and The Vatican. There’s just no way I can convey the richness of Rome’s and The Vatican’s history with just one post. Rome ruled for 3,500 years after all. Also, The Vatican Museum contains the biggest collection of the antiquities. Don’t worry though, I won’t overload you with images, which some of you might even find boring.
.As I wrote before, the Vatican Museum has numerous rooms, about 55 , one of which is the photo above, The Chariot Room.
.That’s Isis , Goddess of Fertility, and those protuberances are not fruits hanging on her chest… those are breasts. Ah, gravity has taken its toll.
.I hope this is the last nude statue that I’m going to post here, but I assure you there’s no shortage of nude statues in my cache……..Above photo is a sweet sculpture of father and son, isn’t it? Actually, no. The title of the sculpture is Temptation of the Grapes, and somehow, temptation connotes something ominous.
.There’s only one word that can describe the photos above. …. MAJESTIC.
Above is the Gallery of Maps . Check out the frescoes on the ceiling. They are flat paintings but look 3 D. This is also the hallway that leads to the Sistine Channel.
A bit blurry, but I’m in the photo, he he he. Gotta be in the photo, y’ know.
Old topography of Italy showing the Vatican’s territories. Nothing in the maps are accurate for obvious reasons, but Pope Gregory Xlll did introduce the Gregorian Calendar, the calendar that we use today. That’s pretty accurate.
Can we just look and admire ? I’ve run out of words to describe the magnificence of this Museum. The place is simply overwhelming.
.That;s the Gallery of Tapestries. Check out the 3 D frescoes on the ceiling. They are actually flat paintings. Do you notice the room is dark? Sunlight will damage the delicate tapestries, so we were requested to minimize the use of flash in our cameras.
.I secretly took this photo. In fact, we were requested not to use our cameras, at all. Anyway, about the photo….. This is obviously a tapestry of The Last Supper. Do you notice the food on the table? There’s fish, and bread, but what do you see in front of Jesus? Doesn’t it look like a pig? Jews don’t eat pork, and Jesus was a Jew. So, what message was the tapestry maker trying to convey here? Was he trying to deny the Jewishness of Jesus ? Is there a subliminal messaging that went on here ? Years after His death, there was a split among His followers and disciples on whether to retain the Jewish laws and traditions, or to separate from them and form a new religion that centers on the teachings of Christ. This is ironic because Jesus Himself never left his Jewish Religion. Well, I’m not going into this. Suffice it to say that, St. Peter ( to whom Jesus has entrusted the building of the Church….. ” Simon, you are Peter, and on this rock, you will build my Church…..”) is considered the first Pope of the Roman Catholic Church, declared just 30 years after the death of Jesus. His successor was Pope Linus, ensuring that succession of Popes should be constant, and should always reconize St. Peter, one of the 12 Apostles, as the first.
.I’m not sure but I think above photo is the official emblem of The Vatican.
The photo above is the exit , out of the Vatican Museum . Next is St. Peter’s Basilica. Okay, here’s the truth. The Vatican Museum has 55 rooms. The truth is, I don’t really know how many rooms I’ve visited. One thing I’m sure of, we didn’t get to see the famous Raphael Rooms, also called Stanze di Raphael, which are actually papal rooms, the private living quarters of the Popes. . There are 4 smaller rooms in the Stanze. Raphael painted the walls of these 4 rooms. What is amazing is that , Pope Julius ll commissioned Raphael to paint the walls the same time he ” commanded” Michaelangelo to paint the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. It’s mindboggling to imagine 2 of the greatest artists , Michaelangelo and Raphael working almost side by side.. Also, I say ” commanded ” because Michaelangelo resisted and had to remind the Pope again and again that he was not a painter, but a sculptor, and thus, wouldn’t do a good job of it. He was also worried that the dome of the Sistine Chapel ( that he himself designed ) which was then simultaneously being constructed, would fall on him. These 2 artists’ works mark the peak of the Rennaisance art in Europe. By the way, the difference between the two as far as their work at the Vatican was concerned was that, Raphael relied heavily on his assistants ( in fact Raphael died prematurely and it was his assistants who finished the job ) whereas M did it all by himself, alone. Not to mention the fact that M painted lying flat on his back, while Raphael painted normally, standing on his feet.
I don’t have photos of Raphael wall frescoes, so apologies to Wikipedia for copying some of theirs and posting them here.
.The title of this fresco is The School of Athens. Heraclitus ( which is actually a portrait of Michaelangelo) is the one seated on the stairs, in front, and leaning on a block of marble. The two men standing prominently in the middle of the painting are Plato and Aristotle. Pythagoras is on the left writing on something , Euclid is the man on the right teaching a few students, Ptolemy is holding some kind of a sphere, the one lying in the middle of the stairs is Diogenes.
The Optional tour of The Vatican Museums which cost $ 65 per person included entry to the Sistine Chapel. We were resquested again not to take any photos, and this time, there were quite a number of guards who saw to it the rule was being followed. I even saw a Japanese tourist who was secretly shooting a video being reprimanded by a rude guard . According to our tour guide, taking photos and videos are banned because Nippon Television Network of Japan has sole copyright or exclusive TV, video and photo rights to the Sistine Chapel. NTV financed the restoration of the chapel in 1990. The restoration took 20 years to finish.
I don’t want to be melodramatic, but I was totally in awe. The Sistine Chapel’s ceiling was one of the greatest masterpieces of all time, made by one of the greatest artist on the planet. To be there and absorbing everything that I saw was quite a unique experience for me. Just imagine, surrounding me were paintings by some of the greatest painters in the world… Michaelangelo, Boticelli, Roselli, among others. The feeling was simply indescribable. Well, I guess it was just me. You know, I saw this Asian tourist ( pardon me, I’m Asian too ) having her photo taken in front of Michaelangelo’s Pieta. She had a wide smile on her face, standing at an angle that was typical, and making a V – sign. O_O I thought that V-sign was an inappropriate and disrespectful gesture to make in a church, and in front of one of the greatest masterpieces of all time. Darn, lady, this is not an amusement park.
About The Sistine Chapel……………..
The Chapel was originally built as a private chapel of Pope Sixtus lV. He was also the one that commissioned Botticelli, Perugeni, et al, to do the wall frescoes that depicted the lives of Moses and Jesus. He died, and was succeeded by Pope Julius lV who urged Michaelangelo to do the ceiling. It was said that another painter recommended Michaengelo to Pope Juluis. The truth was, this painter was a relative of Raphael, who at that time was M’s arch rival and enemy. He knew that M was not a painter, and if, by chance, he accepted Pope Juluis’ job offer, he wished M would fail, and he and his cousin Raphael could then happily gloat over M’s failure. As expected, Michaelangelo resisted at first, but the Pope insisted and in fact dangled several future sculpturing commissions as a kind of bribe. Thanks to that painter’s malicious suggestion, the world got one of the greatest materpiece art of all time. Michaelangelo was of course worried his work wouldn’t be that good. So what he did was to start painting on the ceiling closest to the main entrance. His rationale was , that area would be amateurish, because he knew his foray into painting wouldn’t be that good at first, so to cover that up, he first started painting on the ceiling above the main entrance. He figured that people entering the chapel would look first at the paintings in front, and not above their heads where they would have to crane their necks or tilt their heads uncomfortably. The last painting he did was on the wall behind the altar, The Last Judgement, which he thought was the best, and the first that people would see as they entered the chapel.
.Jesus is in the middle of the painting, and check out the man seated on a rock that is directly underneath Jesus’ image, the one on the right, and holding a soul that he’s about to drop into hell. On my previous post, I wrote that Michaelangelo admired the Belevedere torso . That man’s image above is almost an imitation of the Belvedere torso.
.Michaelangelo painted almost all of the images nude. Some Cardinals complained to the Pope… said it was immoral and appropriate to be placed only in taverns and bath houses , and not in such a sacred place. The Pope ignored their complaints. But later, when Michaelangelo died, the private parts of the nude figures were painted over with some cloth. Check out the photo above, and the main painting. During the restoration process though, the restorers were charged to remove the paint -overs without damaging the original painting. So, what people see now are nude human figures as originally painted. The covers have been washed away. Too bad I couldn’t find any of the restored image.
* I suddenly have a vision of myself holding a pointer and giving a lecture to a nearly empty hall *
* taps table with pointer ” The picture below shows The Creation of Adam, one of the two most famous paintings in the world, rivaled only by Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa.
.It depicts God giving life to Adam, the life force of which emanates from his fingers. It contradicts the Biblical narrative of God breathing life into Adam. Michaengelo of course got away with so many things. In fact, he was commissioned to paint only 12 figures, those of the 12 apostles. M was appaled there would be such a lot of empty space on the ceiling, so the Pope gave him carte blanche on what he wanted to do. M decided to paint Biblical scenes since most of Jesus ‘ life had already been painted on the walls. He ended up painting 300 human figures.
Actually, the chapel is really small. It’s the Pope’s private chapel, where he meditates and prays in private, I guess. But nowadays, it’s the place where Cardinals gather to elect a new Pope., and where tourists can gawk and marvel at the paintings.
.It’;s kind of dark in there, to be honest. But they’re just trying to protect the paintings from harsh light.
Well, I guess this is it . I’d like to inform you that I need a part C of The Vatican and Rome. There are just so many things I want to show and tell you. Please pardon me . I need to show you St, Peter’s Basilica, and Rome, so bear with me, okay. If you’re bored, it’;s okay, but I have to post my stuff here.
Good day to all, and PAX !