King David Statue

Essay by iwantyourskullUniversity, Bachelor'sA, February 2006

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In the year 1180 the multi-faceted Italian artist Benedetto Antelami created a statue that would last for centuries to come, the sculpture of King David stands at the Fidenza Cathedral in Fidenza, Italy. This is only one remarkable figure that Antelami has created in his lifetime, but it is one that will be looked upon as a useful resource and learning tool for artists to come. This essay will recount information about Benedetto Antelami's creative contributions to the art world, pertinent critiques of the statue of King David, comparisons of the King David statue to other symbolic figures like it, and how this sculpture is part of an artistic growth through the Romanesque period to the Gothic era.

Benedetto Antelami was born in 1150 in Northern Italy, he became an active artist in the year 1170 at the Parma school (located in Parma, Italy). Little is known about Antelami's life.

"He was probably originally from Lombardy, perhaps born in Val d'Intelvi. It is believed that he served as apprentice at the Saint-Trophime d'Arles, and that from here the Provençal style of his art can be traced." We first find out about him when his name was written on a marble panel that symbolized the Descent from the Cross (1178) in Parma Cathedral. Antelami was a forward-looking Italian Romanesque sculptor, the "most notable figure in the history of Italian sculpture before Nicola Pisano" , he was inspired by Roman art. His style was unique for the time, he used "elongated figures, compact compositions, and skillful use of drapery folds." These techniques give his work a "gravity and dramatic expressiveness hitherto unknown to north Italian sculpture." Antelami has produced hundreds of works of art that are viewed still to this day, his contributions to the art world have had a...