Defending the 12th century since the 14th; blogging since the 21st.

Catholicism, Conservatism, the Middle Ages, Opera, and Historical and Literary Objets d'Art blogged by a suburban dad who teaches law and writes stuff.

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"You are my sire. You give me confidence to speak. You raise my heart so high that I am no more I." -- Dante

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Who was Cacciaguida? See Dante's PARADISO, Cantos XV, XVI, & XVII.

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Tuesday, March 30, 2004
I'm the Baroque

Good, I can live happily with this result, especially after an otherwise unsympathetic critic identified the Baroque (he called it the Counter-Reformation, but in art, it's the same thing) as the dominant aesthetic of The Passion of the Christ. Mel has cited Caravaggio as his dominant visual inspiration.

which art movement are you?

this quiz was made by Caitlin

"Baroque Art emerged in Europe around 1600 as a reaction against the intricate and formulaic Mannerist style which dominated the Late Renaissance." ( Baroque Art is fairly realistic but is often willing to smudge the realism in favor of theatricality and the emotional pull that is its trademark. You're most likely a creative, talented emotional person who likes attention. Although it could all just be a show.
Famous Baroquers (there are lots): Rembrandt, Rubens, Caravaggio, and You.

As a medievalist, I found it broadening to hear Charles Ryder declare, on being introduced to the art-world of Brideshead Castle:

...[T]hough in opinion I had made that easy leap, characteristic of my generation, from the puritanism of Ruskin to the puritanism of Roger Fry, my sentiments at heart were insular and medieval.

This was my conversion
[!] to the baroque ["ba-rock", as Jeremy Irons pronounces it]. Here under that high and insolent dome, under those tricky ceilings [re TPOTC, read: "special-effect skies"]; here, as I passed through those arches and broken pediments to the pillared shade beyond and sat, hour by hour, before the fountain, probing its shadows, tracing its lingering echoes, rejoicing in all its clustered feats of daring and invention, I felt a whole new system of nerves alive within me, as though the water that spurted and bubbled among its stones was indeed a life-giving spring.

Ah, the eros of Catholic art!

I must admit that I would not have been disappointed if this quiz had identified me with the pre-Raphaelites. I've always been entranced by their rediscovery of Dante, by Wilde's Salome, and by their use of 19th century techniques to bring medieval myth to life (one could say the same of Wagner's operas).

Plus, I've long had in the back of mind a naughty reaction to Dorothy Sayers's rather prim put-down, in her introduction to her translation of Purgatorio, of what she calls "an erotic mysticism borrowed from the Pre-Raphaelites." I do verily believe I've done such borrowing myself, when using the Vita Nuova as a template for a memoir.