Friday, May 30, 2014

Stalking a 17th Century Genius

Gianlorenzo Bernini Sculpting in Clay
I'm writing a story about a 17th century artist and a 21st century art historian meeting, and the big question is, what does he have to say to her, and what does she have to say to him? My main character has done her Master's thesis on the sculptor/architect and meets him in person in St. Peter's basilica, thanks to a magic time-shifting gold pen. Is she kind of his time-stalker? Can she reveal to him things about his future, and what will that do to him and his art?

I'm having fun pondering time travel dilemmas, not to mention how to craft a romantic relationship between a man who's a pre-eminent male chauvinist and a career-oriented contemporary young woman. Big questions arise, but the ones that engage me are about time and history and whether or not history is truly fixed.

I'd love to hear thoughts about these issues, and also suggestions of well-written time-travel books that engage these questions. Ideas?

This photos shows Bernini's rare clay models for his magnificent marble sculptures. They're on view in the Franchetti Collection in the Ca d'Oro in Venice. The Metropolitan Museum in New York published a book, Bernini Sculpting in Clay, which had this to say about the bozzetti, or clay models:

"The brilliantly expressive clay models created by Gian Lorenzo Bernini (1598–1680) as "sketches" for his masterful works in marble and bronze offer extraordinary insights into his creative imagination. Marked with impressions from the artist's fingers and tools, these models give the viewer a sense of looking over Bernini's shoulder as the sculptures were taking shape. Most the models—especially his sketches, or bozzetti—are executed in a loose style that conveys great speed and dexterity, as well as the artist's concern with developing the best possible design."

No comments:

Post a Comment