Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Michelangelo's Noah in the Sistine Chapel



"Noah . . .  became drunk and lay uncovered inside his tent . . . "

"Ham, the father of Canaan, saw his father's nakedness . . . "

"Shem and Japheth  . . . turned the other way so they would not see . . . "

An exhibition of actual-size reproductions of images from the Sistine Chapel is currently to be seen at Vienna's Votivkirche.

Michelangelo's depiction of Noah's right hand, seen here in close-up, is unusual to say the least.

It might be an interesting exercise to compare Noah's hand with the artist's depiction of a cloven foot in the following picture of Noah's sons sacrificing a couple of rams.




6 comments:

  1. An interesting detail - though I think that he pictured the hand as he saw it, covered by the cloth. Though - come to think of it: if Ham had committed incest - or raped his son - the similarity to a (devil's) cloven foot might have been well intended.

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    1. Michelangelo and his assistants had to paint what they were told by their paymasters to paint. To me the painted hand resembles a pig's trotter. On Poet-in-Residence Michelangelo's God is showing his bare backside to the viewer. The artist and his employer were obviously not without an opinion.

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  2. Replies
    1. It's wonderful to be able to examine these important artworks in detail.
      We owe a debt of thanks to Austrian photographer Erich Lessing.

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  3. Of the misshapen, their gyve.

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