Saturday, January 24, 2015

Heart-Shaped Eyes

In Italy this week I had a chance to be in Florence and see Michelangelo's masterpiece, David. It is a stunning example of artistic skill and genius, David with his sling on his shoulder preparing to face Goliath. Actually, in this case, David is fifteen feet tall, so you might wonder why Goliath didn't turn and run for his life.

Even the supposed "mistakes" are part of Michelangelo's intentional perspective and practical approach.  Some say David's head is too large, but this was to indicate his thinking and his courage. His hands seem large to indicate a pose of action, prepared for battle. The extra large feet are due to practical considerations, an imperfect piece of marble that required a large foundation, large feet and the tree trunk beside.

All of this I had heard or read about before. But there's something else I had never noticed or considered. If you can zoom in close as I did, you will note that Michelangelo sculpted David with heart-shaped eyes. He left no reason or explanation for his choice, and so different theories have been set forth. Our Italian guide, Isabella, suggested that the heart-shaped eyes represent David's love for his people and their love for him. Or, it could mean David's love for God and God's love for him. This makes more sense to me, since the scripture does say that David was a man after God's own heart. Even the name, David, means beloved. Who knows? That's the thing about geniuses - it takes one to know one.

Heart-shaped eyes. I've been pondering those eyes all week. What would it mean to see the world through heart-shaped eyes? Would it be like wearing rose-colored glasses, just putting on a happy face, out of touch and unaware, naive about the harsh realities of life? I don't think so. There David stands, bold and courageous, staring down a brutal enemy with those heart-shaped eyes.

What do you make of it? I don't know the answer, but even so, I wish I had eyes like that. I want to look at life through heart-shaped eyes.

1 comment:

Dave said...

Yes if more could only see the world thru those heart shaped eyes..........