The seduction – scenes from a museum

cranach

                                                                      KHM VIENNA

Adam and Eve. Obviously, as the woman holds an apple in her right hand, presenting it to Adam . One can see that somebody must have taken a bite, as a piece of the apple is already missing. The serpent, which writhes around a branch of a tree, whispering the famous seductive words into Eve’s ear; to take a bite from the apple. A special one, as it is from the tree of knowledge.

Adam and Eve facing each other, displayed on two panels. The room at the KHM is almost dark , only some light spots are directed at the paintings. Adam and Eve are both tall and slim with soft contours. He is no muscle packed hero, ready to fight for whatever and she is not the seductive woman with the attractive body and the perfect smile .

The picture breathes calmness. Absolute calmness. And tenderness in how these two figures are portrayed. Tenderness with a touch of sadness.

Sitting there and breathing in the beauty of the painting , a woman in her twenties in black leggings and short, red pants poses between the two panels to be photographed by her boyfriend. Two attempts and then she seems to perfectly blend in with the background. Photo taken.

A group of students line up to watch the paintings, listening to what their guide tells them. Ready to leave I can hear only “ two figures solidified to two pillars of salt”,“ lifeless” the other thing.

I leave, but come back after a while, sitting down and again watching the paintings. No pillars of salt though cross my mind and “lifeless” neither.

Ready to leave again another group of students comes to watch the paintings. Their female guide starts talking :“ Well, of course always the woman was the bad one in history. Adam would have NEVER done such a stupid thing. And above all this way of thinking was very useful for the counter reformation in the first place. Of course the Nazis were keen to spread this way of thinking as well. Even today we (who is “we” by the way?) are not far away from this screwed message”.

Truly a lesson for life about what art can be.

Humbleness in front of a miraculous painting like these ones? Good point.
Art poses questions. YOU answer. And who is right anyway?
Better ask Lukas Cranach the Elder (1472 – 1553), but of course he is dead by now.

So, just sitting there, making your mind free from everything , simply watching what you see very carefully, will open a huge field of options and ways to go you may want to follow or not. And then, when something has unfolded in your mind, THEN you can read the books about what you saw or listen to other people and their experiences.

 

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