240 Module 8 Late Gothic and Renaissance Class Discussion Michelangelo and Giacometti

Link to Image and article of Pointing Man:


Discussion    Michelangelo and Giacometti

                    When I was leaving Venice to travel to the historical city of Florence, I knew that soon I would be seeing one of the most  famous artworks in the history of art. There are actually many statues of David  in Florence, but the sculpture that I was thinking of was Michelangelo’s version. After teaching art history for 35 years, I have grown weary of seeing this statue around every corner. I have read 25 years of essays on the 15 foot naked man, that used to be standing in the largest square in that renaissance city.


The original is in a museum, and the one on the street is a copy! When you travel around the city, you often will plan to meet someone at the “fake” David.

This particular marble man still inspires awe. It may be the most beautiful object made by human hands. And in this giant’s face, one sees the pride that was Florence, in the early years of the 16th century. In this little spot of earth called Tuscany, an artist of immeasurable talent, has created a work of art which perfectly captures an age.


There is another figure which perfectly captures a different time, and that statue is

“Man Pointing”  by the Swiss artist, Alberto Giacometti.

http://moma.org/exhibitions/2001/giacometti/start/goflash.html   Giacometti 

Visit all of the links below and watch Videos

I expect you to discuss, and specifically reference the videos in your discussion.


http://www.artchive.com/artchive/G/giacometti.html                   Giacometti Link

Giacometti was influenced by the philosophy of existentialism, expounded by the writer Jean-Paul Sartre.

What drove Giacometti to make the figure of a man which is hardly a man?

What personal experiences in his life would make an artist create such a statue?
 What about this standing man perfectly captures our age?

Do some research on existentialism, and the artist Giacometti. Compare the figure of Michelangelo’s David; and Pointing Man.

Which work affects you most deeply?

Can we discuss Giacometti’s work as beautiful? Can it stand up to Michelangelo’s as a work of genius?

Refer to research, and the many videos on the two artists.

What representation of man/woman do you think would be appropriate in the 21st century?

What do you think of the Tumbling Woman, and the storm surrounding here creation?

Research her below!

Here is an example, research “The Tumbling Woman”. 



Icon for the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License

Art History I Copyright © by Lumen Learning is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

Share This Book