Baroque Era: Everyone has their own Goliath

The story of David and Goliath is great because the idea of overcoming obstacles that seem impossible can transcend to any area in life. Whether it be your 21credit semester from hell or training for the Equinox. The moral of the story is with God’s help you can do anything. That’s why I picked Berninis David, because in contrast to Michaelangelo, and Donnatellos, David, I have never felt emotion from a piece of rock i.e. sculpture.

The Catholic Church (David) in reaction to the Protestant Reformation (Goliath) convened the Council of Trent to regroup and set decrees going forward in order to keep their faithful.

The Council of Trent convened in Trento, Italy from 1545-1563 in 25 sessions for three periods [1]. The council came of with a strategy to counter the Protestant Reformation and this had an important impact on the visual arts. As part of the Councils recommendations, art was directed to be simple, emotional, and easy to understand for the layperson. This was a counter to the Mannerist style, which was often complicated and hard to understand [2].

What interests me most about this statue is the emotion that you feel from David’s facial expression and physical composition. The squinting of the brow and the biting of his lip brings me back to times when I felt that same as he had to feel in that moment against Goliath. I also like that you feel like the rock he is about to sling might hit you. The position of the torqued abdomen really makes you feel like the rock is about to spring right into your face. This is how the Catholic Church wanted their patrons to feel when looking at art of this time, the simple emotions from God through art.






One comment

  1. melissajenkins93

    I like how you presented this, and as you said, we all face our Goliaths. You did a great job comparing the piece to the Council of Trent. I personally like this piece because it’s how I would have imagined David to look like when he was fighting Goliath. Some of the other portrayals of David that I have seen don’t look anything like what I imagined him to look like.

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