MICHELANGELO'S VISION AND JOHN PAUL II'S WORD
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The Sistine Chapel, a sign of multidimensional complexity, has brought together Michelangelo and John Paul II as partners in an interdisciplinary discourse. The Pope joins it with the assumption that autonomy need not be fundamental to the value of art. Nor does he pay much attention to the aesthetic aspects of Michelangelo's masterpiece. Like Buonarotti, he prefers the transcendental meanings of the work to those features of the Sistine frescoes that have continued to fascinate the connoisseurs of painting. Yet, as both the artist and the pontiff draw their inspiration from the transcendental there is a plane on which the painting and the word can find one another. Even then, though, an attempt at enhancing the text by a pictorial annexe cannot produce the desired effect. The Invisible eludes depiction. While mysticism remains a privileged direct mode of cognition of that realm, meditation seems to offer another, more accessible path. That is why the 'Meditations' rather than trying to penetrate the 'Mystery' concentrate on keeping in touch with the audience.
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