Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Tuesday's Art: The Thinker

The Thinker
Auguste Rodin, ca. 1880
Every once in a while, I like to look at the infamous art pieces of old and ponder what it is that makes them so infamous. Here's a good example: The Thinker. We've all seen it even if we can't guess who created it. This well-known sculpture was first cast by Parisian artist Auguste Rodin in the 1880s. It was meant as a depiction of Italian poet Dante Alighieri, b. 1265. The piece has since come to represent all writers and creators musing over their next work.

As I gaze upon The Thinker today, I see a modern man who is lost in his modern worries: a man wondering how he'll pay his bills now that he's lost his job, how he'll maintain his balloon payment mortgage, how he'll take care of his sick wife, fight the cancer he was just diagnosed with, say goodbye to his dying father, visit his son in prison... As I look at this man, nothing could be further from his mind than flowery poems and pretty pictures.
Of course, my perception says a lot more about me that it does the artist's intent. But perhaps the fact that I can see something so different from what the artist intended over a 130 years later speaks to the timelessness of this particular sculpture.

Suggested verse to repeat when, like me, all you see in this piece is trouble is from Matthew 6:34
PRC buddies, remember to breathe!
"Do not be anxious about tomorrow. -------> 5 count inhale
Tomorrow will be anxious for itself." -------> 5 count exhale

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