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David-why see it?

There is a current post from a first timer to Italy and some of the comments revolve around seeing David while in Florence, I almost asked this question within that Post but decided it wasn't fair to hijack the post and send it in a different direction. The OP asked if he needed to see the real David or would he be just as happy seeing one of the copies in and around Florence. One answer was that "it's OK not to see the real David if you're not that into art, but there IS a difference." I haven't seen the real David; only a copy in one of the piazzas. I'm not an art guy so maybe seeing the real one won't be a big deal to me, so my questions;

  1. Is the difference just that one is a copy and one is real?
  2. What should I be looking at when I'm looking at David?

When I was at the Vatican, I think I loved it thanks to our tour guide who focused on the history behind the art and not the art itself. I think that's how art can be of interest to me. I've only be in Florence for 1 day and so I do want to go back and spend a few days, but I need to be able to do it and go to the galleries in a way that will interest me.

Posted by
7173 posts

Why go to see the real Venice when you could more easily go to see the Venetian Resort in Las Vegas??

Does that context offer a new way to look at your question?

Posted by
483 posts

The main difference is the real David is the most gleaming white Carrera marble. I don't know what the one outdoors in the Piazza della Signoria is but it looks like little better than concrete.

Its like 4K versus old TV. It looks similar from a distance.

Posted by
1975 posts

With just one day, I would skip the Accademia, and probably skip the Uffizi as well, since you're not an art guy.

As an "art gal", I had to see the David when we were in Florence. But, I would have enjoyed the experience a whole lot more if I hadn't had to share it with a hundred or so other people, many of whom apparently had no idea of how to behave in a museum. If I had been lukewarm about it going in, I would have preferred spending my time elsewhere in Florence.

Posted by
337 posts

When I see a famous sculpture or painting, I am in awe imagining how the artist created that piece and that the hands of the artist were on that piece. For example, I loved Michelangelo’s Young Slave because you can see the smoothness of the marble and the roughness of the unfinished part. I could “see” the artist chiseling away in my mind. I feel connected to the artist in viewing the piece up close. I don’t feel that way when I see a copy.

If seeing an original piece of art does not evoke strong emotions, do what you prefer when you travel. Many people go to the top of the Eiffel Tower or bell towers. I have no interest and skip those things.

Posted by
2463 posts

Why spend all that time and money going to Europe when you can go to Epcot and see the world?

There's no law that says you HAVE to see anything if it doesn't float your boat. Sightsee your way. If that means skipping art museums, that's fine. If that means only going to art museums with an art historian to explain what you are seeing, that's fine, too. If you're content with a knock off instead of the real thing, then what ever.

The one question guaranteed to drive me up the wall is " Is xxxxx worth it?". How the %#$@ do I know whether or not a total stranger will find something worthwhile?

Mini rant over. I need coffee.

Posted by
1568 posts

I can only tell you that for me it was a highlight of my 1st trip to Italy. I loved it and felt it was overwhelmingly beautiful.

Perhaps, since you are not an "art guy", you could read about it and perhaps gain an appreciation of how it was made and the genius and talent of Michelangelo. I find if I know something about an artwork that is famous and highly praised, then I can appreciate it better and decide for myself if I like it or not. Education helps make any field of endeavor understandable and helps our appreciation.

Posted by
142 posts

I think there's lots of tourists who wouldn't bother to set their foot in an art museum in their home country, but when they're in places like Italy and France will spend hours in line, fighting crowds to see an attraction, because that's what they're supposed to do when visiting a country like Italy.

Count me as one of the people, who will enjoy a brief visit to a special museum or two, but developed museum fatigue/overload after visiting the bucket list museums and cathedrals in Italy and France. Based on this experience, I now carefully plan my time in cities that I'm visiting and avoid museums unless there is something significant of interest to me. For example, although this is an apples and oranges comparison, the Atomic Bomb Museum in Hiroshima, Japan, to me was way more interesting than seeing scores of priceless sculpture/art pieces in the Uffizi Gallery in Florence. Also, David was worth no more than 10 minutes.

Posted by
93 posts

You know, I just don't understand the snark. The original poster was looking for some insight on art appreciation. They certainly weren't questioning the value of the piece. What's happened to civility?

Posted by
98 posts

You could see both and be a better person for it. While others have expounded on the virtues of the original work in the Accademia, the viewing the copy in the Piazza della Signoria is also important. The original was positioned in the same spot for 300 years and stood as a symbol of the brief period when Florence was truly a republic, versus a veiled oligarchy or a Grand Duchy. You'll note that David peers over his shoulder towards the Loggia dei Lanzi. He seems to be staring at Cellini's monumental bronze 'Perseus with the head of Medusa'. This was cast and installed years later under the patronage of the most formidable of the Medici dukes, Comiso I. It forms a sort of tableau where the very symbol of republican defiance stares at a symbol of Medici power holding a severed head. Not a particularly subtle message.....

Posted by
357 posts

I agree about the less than kind remarks. When I first went to Italy 4 years ago, I loved being on the RS forums more than TripAdvisor because everyone was so kind and it was incredibly snarky over there. I hope that doesn’t change.

I’m also in the camp that tour guides are wonderful. The history of what I’m seeing greatly increases my interest and pleasure.

I think OP question was valid. If he has limited time and if the 2 statutes looked identical, is it worth it? It seems they are not identical, and that’s all he wanted to know.

Posted by
2427 posts

Perhaps an historical fiction would be easy background and explanation for you: The Agony and the Ecstacy by Stone. Then you can decide if you need to see it or learn more. No one else can answer that question, but Jeff might have helped?

Posted by
483 posts

Jeff Henion makes a great point about seeing it in situ.

And I wholeheartedly concur with the recommendation for both the Slaves (at the Accademia or the Louvre) and The Agony and the Ecstasy, as ways of appreciating what goes into sculpture.

Michelangelo believed the statue was already in the marble and it was his job to remove the parts that were not the statue. You can really see that in the Slaves.

Posted by
11551 posts

Allen, it's perfectly OK to skip the galleries, churches, etc. which don't interest you. It's your money, your time and your trip. As far as differences between the original "David" in the Accademia and the copy in Piazza della Signoria - where the original stood for nearly 4 centuries - just the younger facial appearance of the original versus the copy is a significant enough difference for me. The giant-slayer was a youth, right? Take a look at the two and see what you think?

The copy:
https://d1c96a4wcgziwl.cloudfront.net/bd6501_PiazzadellaSignoria_David.jpg

The original:
https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/news/304/media/images/73460000/jpg/_73460513_0h9pt2ho.jpg

The brilliance of the Carrera original versus the weather-stained copy is, of course, a difference as well. But there are some good stories around this block of marble, one of them being that Mike wasn't the first to have had a go at it! It also never made it to its intended perch high on the duomo, and that intended viewpoint is why the thing is intentionally out of proportion. When settled in the spot outside Palazzo Vecchio by the anti-Medici government of the era, his challenging gaze leveled in the direction of Rome, the Biblical hero became a poignant political symbol for a Republican Florence, joining Donatello's bronze version which was at that time in the courtyard of the palazzo.

Allen, some background reading might help bring the piece to life for you, sort of speak?

Posted by
7735 posts

It's your vacation, so of course you should do what you want. My in-laws traveled to Florence several years ago and didn't set foot in a single museum. They had the same philosophy about the copy of David in the piazza. Personally, I can't imagine doing that, but they had a wonderful time. Go figure. To each his/her own.

Posted by
1654 posts

For me, it would be a work of art that was touched by one of the greatest artists of all time. It sets apart the experience.

There are a few things you can do to enrich the experience. Before visiting a work of art, read up on it and the artist who created it. Study the artist's timeline and place the art in the arch of their experience. We visited the Van Gogh museum in Amsterdam and they had the works in chronological order. It was fascinating to see how his art evolved. Starry Night is much more meaningful and poignant when you know the point in his life that he painted it. Having formal art training can also help.

Posted by
468 posts

Great discussion point. Maybe it’s unfair, but when someone says they’re “not really an art guy” in relation to one of the most beautiful and important works of art in Western history, I feel like they have predisposed themselves to not REALLY look at this work of art. What should be something that stimulates your mind has already been tidily walled off from anything other than a checklist item. Wondering what the difference between the real thing and a copy is? Then go see it and find out.

Personally, my answer is: yes, you absolutely must see the real thing. I was probably more excited to see the Baptistry doors, the Donatellos and Brancacci chapel than David... until I saw it. The reality of it is jaw-dropping. It’s appeal is... sublime. And sublime doesn’t copy well.

Btw for you David-heads out there, check out “Il Gigante” by Anton Gill. Good book about the creation of the David, and Florence at the time.

Posted by
1442 posts

jeff-henion, thank you for that superb response!

I had no idea. Your response reminds me why I enjoy expert guides, whether it's in looking at a town center or admiring artwork, there can be so much more than what I see at a glance. With that knowledge, I would find it so interesting to see both.

Posted by
1654 posts

I was probably more excited to see the Baptistry doors...

We stood before them in August 1966. I treasure the memory of seeing the original panels in situ. Three months later they were dislodged in the devastating flood.

I think my memory of that day is enhanced by kissing a cute little 14 year old girl later that evening. This coming August we'll celebrate 50 years of marriage!

Posted by
1086 posts

Maybe it’s unfair, but when someone says they’re “not really an art
guy” in relation to one of the most beautiful and important works of
art in Western history, I feel like they have predisposed themselves
to not REALLY look at this work of art.

This is what I was asking in my question #2. "What should I be looking at when I'm looking at it? I typically do a lot of reading before I visit a place; from historical fiction followed by research to separate fact from fiction to biographies. It's been on my mind for awhile to find a biography about Michelangelo and I suspect that will help me appreciate David...BUT, will I then appreciate it for the story behind it or will I appreciate it as a masterpiece? So, maybe a 3rd question, what makes it a masterpiece?

Posted by
954 posts

Allan, I think you would be able to answer your question, what makes it a masterpiece, if you take the time to see the original. It is truly amazing.

Posted by
1740 posts

You should wonder: "Why did the Medici fans threw rotten vegetables at the David the first time it was drag out of Michelangelo's studio? Why the bondmen of a soon-to-be dictator innately hated the David?"

A complaint call to your history teacher could be appropriate, too.

Posted by
7173 posts

Even if you don’t consider yourself an art lover or a music lover, etc, it’s always good to take every opportunity to educate yourself. I’m not an art lover either, but I’ve been to the Vatican Museums several times and the David in Florence was amazing! I’m still not an artist but I took every opportunity to look at the David and to ponder the history. It was an incredible experience.

Posted by
245 posts

Why see that David at all? It's by far not my favourite Michelangelo, and not even my favourite sculpture of David.

What I'm saying is to not let anyone else tell you what art you should see, or what "must" be seen........but if you're going to see art and have the opportunity, see the original. Why? Not because it looks different than a copy (it might, or it might not), but because it is the result of a process of blood, sweat, and tears. Hopefully you will feel that difference when you are there, which is more than seeing the difference. If you don't, well, then, that piece of art doesn't speak to you, and that's OK because not all people experience the same art in the same way. But something will hit you that way, and you won't know unless you try.....you just have to decide whether trying is worth the time and money. Maybe the real David isn't worth going to see; I don't particularly like his David, and so I didn't even consider going to spend my time going to see the original. I spent my time with other art, but I do appreciate the difference between the original and copies, not necessarily for what they look like, but for what they mean.

The doors on the Baptistery in Florence are copies, yet they are protected by a small fence and people gather around. I bet a lot of people don't even realize they're copies. When I saw the originals, they looked pretty much the same, but the power was in what they meant, not what they looked like.

Posted by
971 posts

I think you don't know what you don't know. I have been surprised by my emotional reaction to art i have seen. Everyone said "Stonehenge is a waste of time, just some rocks". Not to me, I am so glad I went, my third eye was digging on the vibe there. You can feel a connection to something for no rhyme or reason, I can breeze by famous painting and feel nothing, but then one will catch my eye and flood me with all kinds of feelings. Sometimes it's the building the art is in (Louvre) that is, in itself, fun to wonder around. Sometimes I don't research something as complete as I thought and am pleasantly surprised to find a beautiful garden or another treat I did not expect. I would have robbed myself of these experiences if i said "I am not an art/museum person". I am not schooled or versed on art, I gravitate to what I like or what forces me to stop and read the caption or listen to the audio.

Posted by
971 posts

One more point, know what you are looking at . The OP in the original post KNEW he would be seeing a copy, did his research. So many people will post one of the copies on social media and with a caption "I thought David was bigger" or "Wow, I got to see David" as they are sitting outside taking a David selfie.

Posted by
1086 posts

I'm intrigued by the responses but nobody really answered question #2 directly. In the past, I was lead to believe that it's a masterpiece because it was so well sculpted, which prompted the question of what to look at when looking at it. But based on the replies it appears the history behind David is why it is so famous and so that's what I'll focus my research on next time my travels lead me to Florence.

Posted by
2229 posts

I told my wife I would definitely be a while. I probably spent 20-30 minutes in there with David. I sat for a bit, contemplating. Got up, walked around him, looking. Sat down again. I knew the other one was just outside, but that's the other one.

As DougMac said: "For me, it would be a work of art that was touched by one of the greatest artists of all time. It sets apart the experience. "

That's a big deal-but, to each their own.

Posted by
5005 posts

Allan, I would have gotten very little out of seeing it, if we hadn't had a guide call attention to certain features and explain the symbolism and the significance, and its place in history. Look at the expression on his face that seems to change (from fear to determination) depending on the angle you're looking at it. The hands and their position are what some people focus on. The story of what is supposed to be happening at that moment, and how Michaelangelo chose to portray it. Sometime you may come across another artist's version of the event, and maybe see the contrast in how they portray David. Sure a copy is a copy, but pay your respects to the artist and the history by seeing the original. That's my two cents, and I don't have an interest in art, but do in history and Western civilization.

Posted by
645 posts

There is definitely a difference between the real David and the copy in the Plazza Vecchio. The quality of the marble is superficial difference. The way in which the details in the muscle definition are carved in the original is another. So yes, even with the crowds its worth seeing the real thing. But you are quite right that a good tour guide can add layers to the experience. The story of how Micheal Angelo came to sculpt The David is quite interesting.

But people travel for all sorts of reasons. If you have only a short stay and art is not your thing, by all means do something else. I like just being in Florence. And you could spend three days on churches, atmosphere or even better, eating.

I'm sure there are other quality guides, but in Italy we have enjoyed context tours for both art and history. The guides are mostly grad students and the result is a kind of walking seminar. We treat them as a splurge for special places.

Posted by
468 posts

“What makes it a masterpiece?” Allan, this is a GREAT question, and I’ve been thinking a lot about it. This is kind of the essential question in viewing and appreciating art, and I’m not sure I have a great answer.

I think context, historical, symbolic, technological, and creative context is the key to gaining a deeper appreciation of something like David. The context of other works that preceded it, and contemporary sculpture is important as well. If the only statue you ever saw was David, you might not think much of it. Compare it with other sculpture at the time (even afterwards honestly) and you’ll find there’s nothing quite like it. A huge part of that comes down to CRAFT. Michaelangelo’s work is unique and revelatory in its understanding of anatomy, so much so that he uses it to create illusions. David looks real, and natural, but also... people don’t look like that! David’s musculature is both idealized and realistic. His stance is at once dynamic and balanced. And then there’s that hand. Also, David is massive, and feels even bigger when he’s in front you. Unusually for the time, he is not sculpted to be viewed from one ideal angle. It’s flawless. Do you notice these details immediately when you look at it? No, because your cognitive understanding of it is instinctual. It all makes sense visually, even if some of it is slight of hand. With David, context helps, but it’s your visceral, instinctive reaction that matters. I think that’s what makes the work a masterpiece.

Still begs the question if the copy has the same impact. I have to stick with a “no” there because I’ve seen both. I’m also in agreement with everyone about time, practicalities and priorities. If someone’s more interested in a gelato on the Arno I will not argue. But I think yours is a great philosophical question, and I plan on discussing it further with some folks. :)

Posted by
832 posts

Depends what grabs you really. Some people would visit the USA and be taken by the Lincoln k memorial, others by Falling Water.
Some would go to Venice and be taken by the Basilica, others by the Olivetti showroom.

I am more of a Falling Water, Olivetti kind of guy.

There is no right or wrong.

Posted by
3262 posts

I did not grow up in a household where art was a part of daily life. In fact, I didn't see much of any kind of art except in books in college.

I can remember being awestruck the first time I saw a real piece of Greek pottery. I was in the presence of history. No 2-D picture in a book could begin to evoke the feeling I had seeing that pot in person.

I've had many of those experiences since that first one 50+ years ago. One was the first time I saw Michelangelo's Pietà at St. Peter's Basilica. I'm neither Catholic nor religious, but to me it remains the most moving and beautiful piece of sculpture I have seen.

I loved that article about medical students studying art to learn about what to look for in their patients. Much of what we know about history before the invention of the camera is through art. That's the only way we can see what people looked like, how they dressed, how they lived, where they lived and what was important to them, as shown by the artist.

There are many excellent general resources for learning about art. I just ordered a DVD of Nigel Spivey's How Art Made the World: How Humans Made Art and Art Made Us Human. This was a BBC series from the mid-2000's. I can hardly wait to watch it.

Googling produced lots of resources about it including the DVD, the book and even a way to watch the episodes online. Perhaps others who've seen the series or read the book can jump in here about it.

Rick Steves has a couple of useful books on European art, Europe 101: History & Art for the Traveler and Europe's Top 100 Masterpieces: Art for the Traveler.

As much as I learn and love it, seeing art is exhausting. Part of the exhaustion comes from the high level of visual input. Being highly selective helps. Taking a break in the coffee shop helps. Sitting on a bench staring at a particular work helps. You'll find what's best for you.

Guides that concentrate on a small number of highly important pieces are one way to be selective. Exploring more online about what's in a museum can help with targeting what you want to see.

One thing that works for me is to pause at the entrance of a gallery and scan what's there. If nothing compels me to take a closer look, I move on. There are no rules that require following the herd around the perimeter looking at every picture and reading every label. There is no requirement that you see everything in the museum.

About David. The last time I was in Florence, I limited my Accademia time to only the Michelangelo sculptures. I see things pretty quickly. I'd guess I spent 30-45 minutes tops.

This link to a search for them shows some of the pieces others have mentioned. As I remember, all of them lead up to David at the end of a long hall-like gallery. And he is awe-inspiring. This is the link to the story about him on the Accademia website.

Posted by
11551 posts

You've started a great conversation, Allen, and asked some thoughtful questions!

What makes it a masterpiece? Any number of attributes, maybe, such as the deliberate distortion of proportions with the final placement in mind. In the end, though, beauty (or appreciation) is strictly in the eye of the beholder? Personal preference, for sure, but as a sculptor I think (Gian) Bernini is the superior talent (my favorite "David" is his.)

My issue with Mike is that too many of his female forms, especially the painted ones, look like they're on steroids: thick, stocky and overly muscular.

Posted by
1720 posts

In a perfect world, all of us would have done our due diligence in research before going to Florence, or Rome, or wherever, so that when it comes time to actually view a specific painting, sculpture or artifact, our brains will be chock-full of every little bit of historical minutiae at the ready to spew forth to anybody within earshot. See how smart I am?

But it never quite works out that way, does it? I am a neophyte art appreciator at best, yet when I viewed David, all I could say was, 'geez, he's a big fella, in more way than one!' :) Like an above poster, I must've checked this thing out from 10 different angles. Or I remember Michelangelo's Tondo Doni at the Uffizi, and after looking at two-dimensional paintings for an hour, this magnificence with its shadowing and the frame with the gargoyle heads jutting out at me, almost buckled my knees.

The unexpected is what floats my boat these days. Same trip, we had stayed on via Tornabuoni a stone's throw away from Chiesa Santa Trinita and its Sassetti Chapel. My art teacher buddy from childhood told me 'do not miss this. Where you're staying, you'll walk by it a hundred times. The tour guides don't feature this. It's hidden in plain sight.' So we walked into the dark church, put a 1 Euro coin in the machine by the alcove, and suddenly, illuminated, was The Adoration Of The Shepherds by Ghirlandaio, from 1485. Realistic, so detailed. First thing I thought of was some online guy describing Florentian art, saying that the faces in those paintings actually resemble current residents, that some of the paintings appear to suck you in, like a time tunnel of sorts. And so it was here. I was blown away on so many levels by this.

There are parts of the Florence experience that the throngs of tourists make just plain unfun. But get past that, either in your own mind or simply by traveling off-season, and even for a cynical non-art guy like me, the place will have you thinking that painting & sculpting is extremely noble & worthwhile, a decidedly important & crucial part of the human existence.

Posted by
118 posts

One of my keenest memories of my first visit to Florence was turning right into the hallway of the Accademia and seeing David standing there at the end. I haven't always been into art, but my love for it has grown the more I travel. For me, the experience of the beauty, the talent, and the history all rolled into one made a significant impact on me.

If you get advance tickets, it's a quick visit to the museum. Everyone is different, of course, but it was one of my most memorable moments in Florence.

Posted by
11551 posts

Chiesa Santa Trinita and its Sassetti Chapel

Oy. If we both had a nickel for every time we've recommended that one, eh Jay? 😉

Posted by
766 posts

Hi Allan,

What should I be looking at when I'm looking at David?

I am sure there are many, many answers to this. Like you, I am neither an artist or an art historian. I met David on a Rick Steves tour. I am sure we heard from our guide information similar to that Rick provides in this video. Sure, it is short and sweet and simple, but it is a place to start. Michelangelo.org provides more info. And then there is the Digital Michelangelo Project. Google that. I don't even know how to begin reading the files available. Digital Michelangelo had a display at the Accademia when I was there.

I was not particularly interested in seeing the David on my tours, but it felt ok going along with the group. I was more interested in seeing Donatello's David which was being cleaned the first time I visited. But I am glad I did go to the Accademia to see David and the other Michelangelo works there, just because I came away with new information to look up. I am a librarian so that makes me happy.

What I was really happy to find in the Accademia, and what I did not know was there, is the painting of Tobias and the Angel. I had just finished a novel set in Venice that incorporated bits of this biblical story. I spent lots of time in Venice looking at related landmarks and then, surprise !, there is Tobias in Florence in the Accademia.

OK, so to avoid rambling on, let me wish enjoyment when next in Florence, whatever you choose to do. On my wish-list is a visit to Fiesole.

Posted by
1086 posts

As DougMac said: "For me, it would be a work of art that was touched
by one of the greatest artists of all time. It sets apart the
experience. "

I'm nodding my head at this. One of the stories I tell most about my tour of the Vatican is a room as we got closer to the Sistine Chapel-I don't recall if the room has a name, but our guide told us that it was in this room that Michelangelo used to have lunch and just shoot the breeze with the Pope while he was on a break from the Sistine Chapel. For me, that was so cool that someone so famous used to sit in that room just acting like a normal guy and not like the historical figure he would become.

Posted by
1086 posts

Nancy, thank you for that article. That gives me a better understanding of my question #2.

Posted by
1654 posts

I'm intrigued by the responses but nobody really answered question #2 directly. In the past, I was lead to believe that it's a masterpiece because it was so well sculpted, which prompted the question of what to look at when looking at it.

Allan, I think one of the things that makes it a masterpiece is how Michelangelo understood how it would be viewed and factored that into how he sculpted it. If you view it from any other vantage point than the way you see it now, many of the elements are skewed and out of proportion. It is definitely not the same statue when viewed straight on or from above.

Posted by
1153 posts

Excuse me a question, not only to the original poster but to everybody: you do not have to look at David, but if you are not interested in art, why are you coming to Florence? I mean, the shopping is better in Milan, the food is better in Parma, beaches are better in Sardinia, landscapes are better in the Dolomites, people are more friendly in Apulia. And, after all, there is no place like home. Once you remove its art Florence is only a cramped space overcrowded by visitors, and I tell it as a Florentine. Only, I do not understand why people who are not interested come here to overcrowd our roads....

I could consider another approach. Accademia is so overcrowded that I could consider skipping David and looking for other museums. After all, secondary museums in Florence would be first choices all over the world. - Biblioteca Mediceo Laurenziana is one of the most beautiful libraries in the world and it is barely considered by most visitors. - But again, if you are not interested in art, why Florence?

Posted by
1086 posts

I would have gotten very little out of seeing it, if we hadn't had a
guide call attention to certain features and explain the symbolism and
the significance, and its place in history.

Yes, yes, yes. I learned from my first trip to Europe in the value of a good guide. I've said that many times in this forum, that a good guide brings a place to life in a way I never could by wandering through by myself. The best guides we ever used were the one's we used at the Vatican and Colosseum/Forum tours. I also understand the research is my best friend and I do my homework before leaving on a trip. Thus questions like this as well as plenty of reading.

That's my two cents, and I don't have an interest in art, but do in
history and Western civilization.

That's my interest as well, as I stated in my original post; the history behind the art was more interesting to me than the actual art. The more responses I read, I'm beginning to understand that it's OK to look at art in this way and it's OK not to feel a need for a piece of art to 'move' me.

Posted by
1654 posts

The more responses I read, I'm beginning to understand that it's OK to look at art in this way and it's OK not to feel a need for a piece of art to 'move' me.

Absolutely! I have a B.F.A. from a world famous design school. There's art that moves me to tears and art that stirs nothing in me.

Posted by
1086 posts

but if you are not interested in art, why are you coming to Florence?

This is a very good example of the assumption many have made on this post. Not once did I say I wasn't interested in art, all I said I wasn't an art guy. Yes, I could have scripted my original post in a better way, but I wouldn't have asked the questions if I didn't want to learn more to make sure I'm not missing a worthwhile travel experience.

Thank you for all your responses so far, from what I've learned I now have a better idea of what I want to get out of David and of art in general. It likely won't be the appreciation of the skills of the artist, but more for the history and the people behind the art. But sometimes, those two things will go hand in hand as I learned from that article posted about the vein in David's neck; very cool stuff.

Am I wrong? is it OK to appreciate art in my own way?

Posted by
6045 posts

Am I wrong? is it OK to appreciate art in my own way?

Absolutely, that's the only way to appreciate art, if you're talking about true appreciation. Art is personal - it's personal to the artist and it's personal to each individual that sees it or experiences it. You can't make someone appreciate art, art in general or a specific piece of art. Appreciation of art is like that of anything else - history, architecture, food, music, etc - it's unique to each person.

Many people can look at the same piece of art and each one will see something different, appreciate it in a different way, and that's a wonderful thing.

Posted by
11681 posts

Stanford ran a program in Italy over 20 years ago, scanning sculptures with hand-held laser devices to create digital images for preservation. The team would go into a museum after closing, set up the scaffolding and other equipment, and finish before opening time the next morning. My son was involved and did some of the scanning on David. He said that David's face, seen at eye level, is grossly distorted---intentionally so it would look properly proportioned when seen from below.

You might find this article and the images interesting.

https://accademia.stanford.edu/mich/

Posted by
40 posts

Interesting question.
Our relationship - as humans - with art in its many forms - is as intriguing an issue as any contemplated.
To accept the value of history in its creation is not a fool's errand. A quick look at the Classical, Medieval and Renaissance periods
in painting alone clearly reflects the period in which it was rendered. Fo me, it is a vital window into understanding what I am looking at. So - I love - and study - the history of those things that capture my imagination.
History aside - to your question " What should I be looking at when Im looking at David"
1.You are looking at something that is only one of its kind in the known world.

Posted by
245 posts

The context of other works that preceded it, and contemporary sculpture is important as well. If the only statue you ever saw was David, you might not think much of it. Compare it with other sculpture at the time (even afterwards honestly) and you’ll find there’s nothing quite like it. A huge part of that comes down to CRAFT. Michaelangelo’s work is unique and revelatory in its understanding of anatomy, so much so that he uses it to create illusions.

Well, that's certainly a matter of opinion, one that I don't share......I don't even think it's the best Michelangelo sculpture (I think his Pieta is far better). And in spite of that, I can still wonder at how so many of the women sculpted by Michelangelo are pretty fearsomely muscular and look more like men with a few nips, tucks, and add-ons.

However, Michelangelo's David is one of the most famous but, as we know, famous does not equal most talented or highest quality. My favourite sculpture of David is from 100 years later and does represent a different philosophy in art, the Baroque period with more movement and realism: Bernini's David. That one I spent about 20 minutes pondering and seeing it from different angles.

Posted by
40 posts

I continue:
Look carefully at the execution of the arms, legs and hands - and now the balance.
Here now , imagine yourself with a hammer and a chisel - (or - Michelangelo - a man - like you) - producing this magnificent work. Did he just remove everything that did not look like David? Which part gave him the most difficulty.?
Why did he choose to execute it in these diminsions?

A thousand historical curiosities come to mind - but for me - It is entirely visual.

Posted by
109 posts

The David - Why see it?
The Super Bowl - Why watch it?
The Newspaper - Why read it?
Because it interests you.
If it doesn’t, then don’t.

Posted by
668 posts

In 2010, and for just a few days, a fiberglas copy was placed on the Duomo for people to see it as it was intended to be seen. It would have been about 70 feet above street level. I took several art history classes in College back in the 70's and not one class ever mentioned the David's intended placement on the Duomo.

https://youtu.be/P3udugvhnDk?t=4

Posted by
38 posts

Allan, I am glad you posed the questions, they have prompted such an interesting discussion.
Kathy, I so appreciate your posting the two David's, I do see differences!
From my general perspective, where the art and buildings of Europe are concerned, I just marvel at what was accomplished and in the times they were accomplished, it's all quite remarkable. Take David, Pieta, the Veiled Christ or Apollo and Daphne, how on earth were they able to create these amazing pieces with all the many intricate details and true to life appearance ... out of marble? I'm frankly astounded and I guess that's where my appreciation stems from. The incredible talent of these individuals is just stunning.

Posted by
1086 posts

A couple of interesting facts-at least to me that I pulled from the Accademia's website, I believe both facts may have been touched on by others in the comments;

He actually was supposed to be on Florence’s cathedral (the Duomo), way up high on the side of the church where he would have seemed much smaller if we saw him from below. But as soon as the David was finished, everyone knew it could not go in that spot way up because it was a masterpiece to be enjoyed. A committee was put together to decide where it should go and thankfully it went in Piazza della Signoria where it could be admired up close.

Now I have to wonder, what would have happened if they would have put him where originally planned? Would he have ever been famous for the reasons he is now?

The first copy, in Piazza della Signoria, is a copy in the *exact spot** where the original used to be for over 400 years and the second one is in Piazzale Michelangelo overlooking Florence. This second one is also made out of bronze instead of marble.*

For me this validates a reason to see the copy as well, because you're seeing it where people saw it for the very first time. It's the kind of historical fact that I wish I would have known when I saw the copy, my imagination would have run wild back to when it was first placed there and the sense of wonderment it created in people when they saw it for the first time.

Posted by
245 posts

For me this validates a reason to see the copy as well, because you're seeing it where people saw it for the very first time.

Absolutely! Seeing where and how something is displayed adds texture to the piece......I was just talking with a friend (art history Masters) about how I wish some of the art treasures we love could be experienced in the way and in places for which they were originally created. I understand why they have been moved inside to museums for their protection (from environmental degradation), but it's still a shame.

Posted by
11551 posts

Yes, as mentioned earlier in the thread, "David" was originally destined for a perch high on the Duomo BUT they had to find a different spot because of the immense size and weight of the thing; they didn't think they could hoist it into place or maybe not without the risk of damage, anyway. It was at that point that the alternate location was decided.

Good question about how well-known it would have become if it had ended up as planned!

There has been a lot written about this piece; here are a couple of easy articles from Florence's Opera Magazine.

https://operaduomo.firenze.it/en/magazine/posts/a-giant-on-the-move-michelangelo-s-david-part-1

https://operaduomo.firenze.it/en/magazine/posts/a-giant-on-the-move-michelangelo-s-david-part-2

Posted by
126 posts

Lola, thank you so much for offering the link to the scanning project! Just amazing...the photos taken inside the Duomo are wonderful as well.

Posted by
668 posts

Not to hijack the thread, but the basic question posed by Allan is a very valid one. For instance, why do people line up and pays money to go see the original Mona Lisa as a must do activity in Paris? There is no reason for anyone to see the original, in the setting it is in now. You can't get close enough to even visually resolve any difference of the original to the same experience of seeing the various copies, that you can get close to, or viewing the original in hi-resolution on line. What does it "mean" to say that you have spent the time to see the original? Does it mean, some sort of prestige signaling, that you made the effort to be in the presence of the original?

For me this has become a difficult question. Even just visiting the Roman Forum, in Rome, turned in to a "What am I looking at" sort of question.

Its the same with many "originals," of historic art and sites. Bath in England is one of those. There is almost nothing left of the original Roman baths, in Bath. It looks original, but that was mostly all reconstructed.

200 years from now, people will be visiting Notra Dame in Paris and marveling at the roof, and maybe not knowing it all burn down and was reconstructed in the 2020's.

Being born, in 1956, as a white person, in the USA, I grew up thinking stuff from the 18th century was as old as old is. And that Americans had invented everything. That's what the public schools taught us. I go to Europe, and that entire world view got shredded: Cause everything I was taught was mostly wrong. And it gets shredded by the art, the architecture, the technology and the political upheavals that make Europe what it is today.
To bring this back to topic Why is the original David important? I don't think it is as a must see. Its seeing how an artist made perspective work in the form of sculpture in the 16th century and how this artist had to make adjustments in his head as to how it would be viewed from street level at its intended placement. You can see that from the copy. And in an odd sense the David was a failure. And then the question becomes, well, what happened to all the other works that were supposed to go on the Duomo? That's my reasons why the Michelangelo, original David, is not that important. Yet, it does lead to many other questions. Museums don't work for most people that are not interested in the small differences. Museum designers are still acting as curators, and can't present antiquities in any sort of interesting way to certain people. They group things in wings. So they have 50 examples of nearly the same thing, of the same cultural time period. There should be a place in a museum for people that don't want this monotony. Call it the Arbitrary Wing: Randomly place antiquities, decorative arts, sculptures and paintings in a wing: No rhyme or rhythm to it. I think many people would enjoy that. And each one took you to a different place in history. There is aplenty of back stock to make this happen.

I just glaze over, after seeing, 150 ring fingers taken from Etruscan tombs and the sameness is boring. And what is the sense of having five Egyptian mummys and burial effects, if they all look the same and no real explanation of the differences: Or endless galleries of portrait art, of Monarchs that I don't care about?
Rick S. is a former Art Student, so he does present the museums as something you should be interested in. Its just A guide book, and has an emphasis, that you should see the Art. I know several world travelers, that make my small explorations trivial, and some of them don't care at all about historic stuff. And they have a great time. :)

Posted by
1086 posts

Allen, some background reading might help bring the piece to life for
you, sort of speak?

Kathy, thank you for the links. I'm more convinced than ever that for me, I need to understand the history behind the art if I'm going to appreciate it. Now I have 3 new things to research;

  1. Based on that article, it appears it was a political symbol before it was considered a masterpiece. Is that the case?
  2. The article talks about the difficulty about putting it up on the Duomo, thus its place in the Piazza. A logistics issue and not because it's a masterpiece. So once again, when did it become a masterpiece to the masses?
  3. It was too difficult to raise to the Duomo, it took 4 days to move to the piazza, how did they move giant blocks like this from the quarry in the first place?

Plus, does anyone know if that contract Michangelo signed is on display or is it buried deep in the archives? I'd love to see that.

Posted by
245 posts

There is no reason for anyone to see the original, in the setting it is in now. You can't get close enough to even visually resolve any difference of the original to the same experience of seeing the various copies, that you can get close to, or viewing the original in hi-resolution on line.

Ah, but that's not what seeing the original is about -- it's about an intangible energy that can't be delivered through a hi-res image on line or about tiny details. If you want to see what kind of brush strokes the artist used, get a high-res image, but if you want to feel the emotional impact of a piece of art, you have to see it in person, and you don't have to be close (sometimes it's better if you're not close). Not everyone will feel the same emotional impact (or even any impact) from the same piece of art, but it's not going to happen from studying the details.

Posted by
10792 posts

There is no reason for anyone to see the original, in the setting it
is in now. You can't get close enough to even visually resolve any
difference of the original to the same experience of seeing the
various copies, that you can get close to, or viewing the original in
hi-resolution on line.

This reminds me of a solution to the over-tourism question that often comes up.

Posted by
765 posts

I sit there in awe of the Renaissance perfect man and complain to the person next to me "why did he use my body and somebody else's face?" hahahahahah. That's why I see it - it makes me happy!

Posted by
4153 posts

I wonder if the "don't see the original" commenters would have the same view of not going to see the incomparable Sistine Chapel?

Yes, I can buy a great photo book and see the amazing frescoes up close!

Not so, I have been to see the chapel twice, both times I visited Rome. When I go back, I will want to see it again. It is amazing.
David's copies are not where near as finely sculpted. Art is something that individuals have personal preferences. I don't care much for modern art. I am not a big fan of Picasso, but I still can see something special about his art.

If you don't go to see the original, you will never know what you missed by not going.

Posted by
78 posts

I'm also not an art person nor museum person. They tend to make me sleepy and I loathe the crowds.

In fact I almost didn't go to Florence because I was worried it was too museum focused. I'm so glad I did - loved it way more than I expected.

I appreciated the art in the Uffuzi but must admit after an hour I started to feel overwhelmed & tired. The Accademia is much smaller & when I first saw David there my jaw hit the floor and I let out a wow! I can't pinpoint when something moves me & when it doesn't but the original David sure did. Also seeing the slaves & the other works of art by him in the hall really added to the appreciation.

No one can know until they go and see for themselves. I can only tell you I'm sure glad I saw it. It's a great memory of a wonderful city.

Posted by
245 posts

I wonder if the "don't see the original" commenters would have the same view of not going to see the incomparable Sistine Chapel?

I am not in the "don't see the original" group, but the Sistine Chapel was in the "yeah, it's nice" category, and it was not a powerful or stunning experience for me. If I went to the Vatican again, I would not want to see it.......but I would love to go see St. Peter's Basilica again because it really blew me away (though in Rome, I'd still recommend people see the Borghese over the Vatican complex, if they were limited in time/choice).

Another example of different strokes for different folks. No one piece of art (or art installation) will have the same effect on everyone.

Posted by
1953 posts

I think the original questions posed goes back to the cliché, "Art is in the eye of the beholder." Like the word perception, there is no right or wrong answer. To me art is a subjective experience and we all interpret it differently. I enjoy all types of art and specifically research the artist, & history beforehand. We enjoy visiting museums in our travels. It's an integral part of our journey.

In addition, art can also elicit an emotional reaction. When I saw Michelangelo's David I was in awe. I was able to take my time and circled to appreciate the scope of the entire piece. I had read that the marble used had been abandoned for 25 years because the original artists thought it had "too many imperfections." For myself and others who appreciate Michealangelo's artistic versatility I am grateful for the contribution of this Renaissance man.

Edit to add: @Lola, thanks for sharing the link. I would have loved to be a part of that study! @Kathy, thanks also for the links to the informative articles.

Posted by
668 posts

If you go to the birth place of George Washington, Popes Creek, Virginia, you will find a beautiful house, that most everyone thinks is where George was born. But that house is entirely a fake, and not even on the original foundations of the place George was actually born.

If you go to Verona, you will find the Romeo and Juliet House: Total fake.
The site of the original Ara Paca is under the Cinema Nuovo Olympia, and some pieces of the original structure became part of the Villa Medici. Its a re-construction.

The Capitoline Wolf has been dated to the 12th century, and the figurines are 15th century.

The Marcus Aurelius out side the Capitoline is a copy, the Horses above Saint Mark's in Venice are copies. Most of Pompeii and Ostra Antica are re-constructions of stones found, near the structure that had collapsed. Go to Hadrian's Villa and see the Canopus, and you are seeing a near complete re-creation. Little there is real to the place. The Bell Towers of St Mark's and Torcello are not very old.
Every Arena in use has been reconstructed. Roman roads just have whats left, that being the paver stones: Those roads had entire layers, of smaller stone above them that is now gone.
The Roman Forum, the understood Forum, of the three Other Forums that happened, is a mess of buildings, that don't adhere to any particular date. The Old London Bridge one might think is in Arizona now, yet the Brits will tell you its still in London, the buyer just got the facade.

Its a confusion to figure out what is original and what is not. Its also a confusion to figure out the meaning of a fake, a re-creation, restoration and a true original. There is a back room to the Museum Opera, Florence, where they have a small collection of Reliques that were later determined, after many years, to be fakes. I love this room. The Church admitted, some of these are not the real bits and pieces. :) Though they were worshiped for many years. :) Its still Art to me.

So what is the original? And CAN you see the original? Is it important to see the original?

Even the David had its arm broke off, and some of it was never recovered. So the original David is not entirely original.

You have to make you own call on this. You have to come to terms with it, cause the David is one of many decisions. Is it important to see what you think is original? Is the original important? Do you need that glow of being in the presence something determined, to be original, in a world focused to see originals?

And all of this is sort of funny, because in the next ten years, you are not going to be able to see anything with out a 6 month prior reservation: The world is changing in the demographics of tourism : Its changing fast. So its not like you can go back and see something later. You are not going to be able to see it later.

Posted by
4153 posts

Francis,
Your point is well taken, ancient stuff is not always the original. Still, a lot of it is real.

The Roman Forum was pretty much destroyed in an earthquake 500 and most of the stone from the buildings were used to build St. Peter's Basilica.

Many famous buildings in Germany were destroyed by allied bombing in WWII, yet, like the Frauen's Church in Munich, were rebuilt using the original blocks.
I lived in Augsburg, Germany for four years and the wonderful City Hall built in the 17th Century was burned down due to allied bombing, yet the huge walls remained. The building was rebuilt based on photos, even the exact frescoes. It is still an awesome building.

Posted by
1086 posts

Is it important to see what you think is original? Is the original
important? Do you need that glow of being in the presence something
determined, to be original, in a world focused to see originals?

When I read this I immediately thought of Lascaux caves in France. We visited in May last year and I've made comments several times on this forum in response to what to see and do in the Dordogne region. I'm surprised how many responses come back that Lascaux isn't worth it because it's a reproduction. Sadly, in this case there was no choice, but for me it was still spectacular. Outside of the reproduction of the cave is a museum with reproductions of the reproduction and you can get very close to the paintings probably in a way that people saw the original cave before it had to be closed down.

Posted by
1153 posts

The print in the second article of the Opera magazine looks very much the moment when David was moved from the piazza to its present location, via a temporary railway track. It took several days even in 1873. I believe the hall housing the David was built around it, so you cannot move it now.

Posted by
2378 posts

DougMac, I loved your comment about the artist having actually touched it. That was what was so special about seeing a piano that belonged to Mozart when I was in Salzburg. Personally, I could never compare the Super Bowl to David! Much as I love college football, it does not compare to Renaissance art.

Posted by
1039 posts

When you go to see the real David, you also get to see the Prisoners which I think are just as interesting as seeing David.

Posted by
10792 posts

Being touched by, walking in the footsteps of, yup that's what I love and Italy is spectacular for that.

In Budapest I know where the ghetto wall once stood and my skin crawls when I cross the line into the ghetto. I've often considered staying in the Gellert so I can walk down the same stairs as Schindler.

Posted by
1953 posts

To Doug Mac, Cala and Sir James E., I agree "walking in someone's footsteps" brings on a whole new meaning. Speaking of Budapest we visited the Franz Lizst Memorial Museum last August (his former home.) To our surprise when we entered we saw two of his Chickering pianos. They were similar to an 1847 Chickering that my husband inherited from his Great grandparents. Made of the same Brazilian Rosewood. We talked to the docents who were amazed that we had a piano from that era. In 1852 the Chickering company in Boston burned to the ground. It was rebuilt. Chickering can trace its roots back to 1823. Chickering was the house piano at Ford's Theater the night Abraham Lincoln was assassinated (1865). We were touched by our Budapest experience.

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10792 posts

Touching history is the best part of my trips. Sometimes not so pleasant like Maidan in Kyiv.

Posted by
1086 posts

To Doug Mac, Cala and Sir James E., I agree "walking in someone's
footsteps" brings on a whole new meaning.

Not a European example but before a trip to Quebec City I had read a biography about Generals Wolfe of the British Army and Montcalm of the French Army leading up to the Battle at the Plains of Abraham. There was a paragraph on General Montcalm being injured and he was taken to a church where he dies. I never thought much about it at the time, but our guide took us to the church and we stood on the very spot where Montcalm died. It was one of those Wow moments that personalized the tour because this was the very spot where due to his death, the battle was lost and the future of Canada was determined.

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1953 posts

Per Sir James E.: "Touching history is the best part of my trip." Agree. Another example for us was visiting Mostar and Stolac in 2018. What made it real for us was our local guides. Each of them were youngsters during the Bosnian War. How they survived was a miracle. Seeing the devastation of Stolac was especially difficult to view. It still is a beautiful place with the stunning deep-green Bregava River but the marks of war are still visible everywhere-burned down buildings and houses heavily scarred by shelling. Our Stolac guide described the division that still exists. I will never forget waving goodbye to our guide and thinking what an impact he made on our lives that day and forever.

Posted by
668 posts

Mike didn't add anything to the final surface of any of his Sculptures. Those were done by other people. To smooth the surfaces. These were specialists in sanding. So what you are looking at, if you think he polished it, isn't something, he did. He had other people do that. Just say'en. :)

Posted by
364 posts

My wife and I saw it - years ago.
We're heading back in April and she loves the idea of seeing it again.
I didn't care back then and I don't care to go now.

Things strike people very differently.

We went to the Orsay (in Pairs) 6 years ago and liked it.
We went back this fall and used their audioguide (rather than Ricks) and spend 6+ hours there.
Very good audioguide helped, and eating at their nice restaurant. :-)

Posted by
1953 posts

I don't think I read up thread about this article of Rick's from 4/21/11. Search "Shooting David." All about how Rick and the PBS film crew made a "poor mans dolly" to get a swooping shot of Michelangelo's David. Creative!

Wonder what "The Renaissance Man" would have thought. ;)

Posted by
245 posts

I was just thinking of this thread while talking to someone about a great sculpture in the Vatican Museum, Laocoon and his Sons. The marble sculpture in the museum is a copy of an original bronze.......but a copy that is almost 2000 years old. The original is about 200 years older than that. So, a copy, but copy does not always mean recent or modern.

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1153 posts

Well, you usually cannot touch the exhibits, but visiting Puccini's birth house in Lucca on an invitation by the museum management, I was allowed to play an excerpt from Turandot on the very same piano on which the opera was composed. It was really a special feeling.

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337 posts

My husband had the opportunity to touch Michelangelo’s Young Slave because we were on a special tour for the blind. It brought tears to my eyes seeing him experience touching the same piece crafted by Michelangelo.

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668 posts

There are lots of examples of sculpture, where by all we have are the copies. The originals are long gone. We know about the originals because people wrote about them in ancient texts. In our modern time frames, we may dismiss these as not being original, even if the copies are thousands of years old, and if you no longer have the original, the copy sort of, "becomes the original," unless you care to have looked up the history of the thing you are looking at, Or care at all, if you are looking at an original or a copy; what does it matter? The experience is the same. And a better experience if you see the copy art near where it was originally. Glad the Laocoon was mentioned by Allen. Its my private, all time, favorite sculpture. Knew what i was looking at was a copy, and that made it even more interesting, since it was far harder to make a stone copy than it was to make the original as cast bronze. The copy is a better example of "art." One wrong hammer swing, and you have to start over on that part: A bad cast, you just do it over till its good. We have a language problem with lots of stuff, What is Roman and what is Etruscan and what is Greek, being one of those language problems. We try to fit periods of history in to categories and then apply labels on them: The Romans ARE Etruscan. And the Etruscans WERE Greeks. It bends my head sometimes when I see a re-pro and the tag says its a Roman copy of a Greek original. Its a newer copy. Of course there had to be newer copies. And the Romans had something of a catalog of what to reproduce. Things weather after 600 years. And if you are rich beyond any sort of common understanding - of which, some of these people were - you have some one make you a copy out of that catalog. After all, you have 5,000 slaves making you a palace in the middle of nowhere, and a few re-pros is the icing on the cake. These are what we see in the galleries. Its second hand. Its 2,000 year old second hand: It is still Art.

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2 posts

If you enjoy the history and 'how to' of art works there are many books about the David but one of the best is "Oil and Marble" by Stephanie Storey. It's about the rivalry between Leonardo and Michaelangelo but the best part is a description of the sculpting process and complicated transportation of the David through Florence. Very interesting.

Posted by
1086 posts

There are lots of examples of sculpture, where by all we have are the
copies. The originals are long gone.

Not sculpture, but Lascaux caves? I'd love to see the original, but that's just not possible for the general public anymore. Sure, some of the caves in the region are still showing the original cave paintings, but even then, most of the cave floors have been dug out to make them accessible and so you're not getting the true sense of how the artists crawled through tight spaces and laid on their backs to paint/draw. Those caves are all still worth a visit.

Posted by
5701 posts

Seeing David for the first time took my breath away! My third visit to David was with my teen grandkids and they had the same reaction. It is one of my
all time travel highlights. Awesome.

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3 posts

I'm not an "art guy"either. I'd rather sit at a cafe, drinking coffee or wine & people watch than wait in line for hours to go into an overcrowded museum looking at wonderful things I will soon forget.
But DAVID. OMG. I walked around a corner & saw David. The statue was amazingly beautiful. It is the one thing I still remember from my time spent in Europe's art museums. So glad I had the opportunity!

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8607 posts

My first time in Florence I saw the copy outside in Florence. Twenty seven years later I returned and saw the real thing in the museum. It was impressive because the museum also had the practice pieces of marble he used. That and a local guide made it very interesting.

I don't run to see most art. But the David and then the Uffizi was time well spent.

But if you're not into it, then don't waste your time. It's your time and your money.

Posted by
1086 posts

It was impressive because the museum also had the practice pieces of
marble he used. That and a local guide made it very interesting.

Frank II and anyone else who wants to weigh in, would you say that a guide was crucial to your enjoyment or just an added bonus to the experience?