Saturday, February 4, 2017

Last Judgement Tympanum - Gislebertus

We just learned about the Lewis Chessmen.

Another famous Romanesque sculpture is the Last Judgement Tympanum at Autun Cathedral in France, made by the sculptor Gislebertus in 1130.

A tympanum is a half circle or triangle shaped sculptured wall over a doorway or window.

This sculpture has Jesus Christ very large in the center, surrounded by the Virgin Mary and the apostles.
The left side shows people trying to get into Heaven, with St. Peter and angels.
The right side shows people being judged in Hell by demons and angels.
There are signs of the zodiac in the arch above the main painting.
Underneath the sculpture in the doorway it says "May this terror terrify those whom earthly error binds for the horror of the images here in this manner truly depicts what will be"

About 600 years after this sculpture was made, some people decided they did not like it.
So they covered it up with plaster, and put another piece of artwork on top of it and everybody forgot that there was even a sculpture there.
Around 70 years later, someone had chipped the plaster and they discovered the sculpture hiding underneath, so they uncovered it and cleaned it up as best they could.

The sculptor's name "Gislebertus" is carved into the side of the sculpture, which was very different for the time it was made, because people used to just make statues for the glory of God, and didn't feel like their name was important.
Gislebertus was one of the first sculptors to leave his name on sculptures, and after him a lot of other people started doing the same thing.

(from: wikipedia - autun cathedral)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Guennol Lioness