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Friday, February 29, 2008

Benedict on the Baroque

In the two articles mentioned in the post below, Pope Benedict XVI passes comment on the Baroque. It seems to be his favourite. The language is certainly poetic.

"The Baroque

Baroque art, which follows the Renaissance, has many different aspects and modes of expression. In its best form it is based on the reform of the Church set in motion by the Council of Trent.

In line with the tradition of the West, the Council again emphasised the didactic and pedagogical character of art, but, as a fresh start toward interior renewal, it led once more to a new kind of seeing that comes from and returns within.

The altarpiece is like a window through which the world of God comes out to us. The curtain of temporality is raised, and we are allowed a glimpse into the inner life of the world of God. This art is intended to insert us into the liturgy of heaven.

Again and again, we experience a Baroque church as a unique kind of fortissimo of joy, an Alleluia in visual form. "The joy of the Lord is your strength" (Nehemiah 10). These words from the Old Testament express the basic emotion that animates this iconography."