Saturday, May 02, 2009
What is wrong with this picture?
This photo was taken in a Rome church and sometimes it takes an abashed layman to complain.
Yours truly was stupefied to see this matchwood and carpet atop this gorgeous polished marble floor in a prominent Rome church. How can we disentangle this precious floor from this "obstruction"? What has been created here is an atmospheric disturbance in the antique floor plan.
It's a begrimed sight: besides blocking our view of the exquisite floor, this is the type of obstruction that causes floors to be pockmarked. Also, this part of the floor is meant to be the aperture of the sanctuary and so is not to be disturbed in this or any other fashion.
Unwittingly, a lot of this stuff came with the seventies and eighties, but now is the time to move on. The stratagem was to bring the altar out to the people, but in this instance it fell on its face. Thankfully, we have already breasted the high ground after the sixties and today is the time for us to move on along with the rest of the world. The much-vaunted "renewal" doesn't work with now dated ruses like this.
The art historian would be immensely satisfied to see this hulk taken out to the dumpster and to see the virgin floor returned to it's original shine as the original artists intended until they were countermanded in our own generation.