Studied Beauty

Over the summer my husband and I took a lovely trip to Europe. We visited Italy and France, and there are numerous stories to tell and memories to recount, but for some reason the one that stands out to me the most today is our trip to the Uffuzi Gallery in Florence. I have been to art galleries before and seen very famous work of art, but often my awe has come more in the idea that I was standing in front of a famous thing rather than the thing itself. I am not a great student of art, but I like to think that I can appreciate it very much. But that day in the Uffuzi it was different; I was captivated by it. We spent a good half an hour in the Botticelli room, and if it hadn’t been for the crowds I would have spent the entire time in front of this lovely lady:

I think it is her colors that pull me in the most, but there is also something about that gaze. Botticelli is able to create a striking sense of innocence in such a sensuous surrounding. This is the birth of a goddess, but Botticelli’s subject matter vacillated from pagan to Christian quite easily, and to me here he has created the perfect Eve. She stands in a moment of innocent glory before the knowledge of good and evil grounds her.

We might not always have easy access to these famous works of art, but, in my experience, it is not so much the subject but the eyes that see that clearly mark the difference. I hope you find a thing of beauty to rest your gaze on today, happy studying…

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