Essay about Falls and Rises Art Project

Submitted By pminnick1
Words: 1019
Pages: 5

Falls and Rises

A Letter to Michelangelo

By: Patrick Minnick

ARTH 112
Creative Project

Dear Michelangelo, Hello, my name is Pasquale Spina. I am a young banker living in Florence, Italy in the year 1482. I come from a long line of wealthy bankers. The name Spina is known throughout Italy and my house is regarded as one of the most wealthy and influential banking families. Naturally, we have close ties to politics and consider ourselves humble, yet powerful, friends of the Roman Catholic Church. My Great Grandfather was even the Pope; a position regarded as the most influential in all of Italy. However, my family was not always on top. Many centuries ago, my ancestor and namesake, Patricles Spina, was a slave for a great Roman politician and banker named Maximus. Patricles was his most trusted slave and learned much from the politician. That is, until Patricles broke from his chains, slayed Maximus in his sleep, and offered all of Maximus’ slaves wealth and freedom in exchange for their loyalty. Or so the story goes. Now that you know my story, I must tell you about my vision. Recently, I dreamed of a great monument; a monument that will decorate my family’s courtyard for many years to come. It will be the first thing our loyal customers see when they enter my bank and it is meant to leave its viewers in awe. It will represent our great wealth along with my family’s history and faith. My vision was of a very baroque style fountain with great balance and made of stone and marble, with two large waterfalls on each side. The waterfalls were fed from above by the massive aqueduct that encircles my bank’s courtyard. The waterfalls represent my family’s fall to slavery, before our rise to power. They also represent the washing away of the old to make room for the new. To help complete the waterfalls and pool of water, I have called on Giovanni Guerniero, the great landscape architect that made the Bergpark Wilhelmshöhe waterfalls. At the base of the fountain were the Stations of the Cross. This is to be completed by you, Michelangelo, for I know your experience with religious scenes is quite extensive, especially with your work in the Sistine Chapel and your Pieta. A representation of each Station was sculpted into the stone with each one squared off from the other. This is a sign that my family’s faith sets the foundation for our success. Just as Jesus persevered through the crucifixion in order to rise from the dead and achieve everlasting life, my family will persevere through all challenges and come out stronger than it was before. Moving up from the base, there is a pool of water that the waterfalls drain into. The pool is oval-shaped with a circumference of at least thirty feet. It is not very deep, at only 3 feet or so. The bottom is lined with gold plating and appears to sparkle in the water, causing passerby’s to stop and toss a gold coin in, wishing for wealth as extensive as ours. But, I do not forget the lesson of loyalty that Patricles taught us. That is why the gold that collects at the bottom of the pool will be donated to the city’s poorest citizens, in exchange for their loyalty, of course. The focal point of the monument, however, is at the center of the pool. On an oval platform stands a great sculpture of my ancestor, Patricles. He is rising out of a pile of gold coins with half of his legs still submerged in the coins. The coins are really just gilded marble that is sculpted in such a way that it looks like a large pile of gold coins. This shows how one must conquer wealth in order to obtain and maintain power. Patricles’ naked body is sculpted out of marble and almost resembles your sculpture of David, just less elegant and fiercer. Patricles’ body is muscular and chiseled. His face is stern and determined…