More Gallery Visitation

cafeteria ladyThe Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York has housed a collection of Arms and Armor for a hundred years.

In the 1920’s, art snobs complained that suits of armor do not belong in world-class museums filled with paintings by such geniuses as Pablo Picasso.

Au contraire: Many suits of armor are exquisite works of art.

One may discover this fact for oneself by visiting The Art of Power, at the National Gallery of Art in Washington. It is just about the coolest museum exhibit ever.

…Back to El Greco: His most famous painting is “Burial of Count Orgaz,” which is in a church in Toledo, Spain.

One of the benefactors of the church was such a good and pious man that, when he died, Saints Stephen and Augustine came down from heaven to lay the dead man in his casket.

burial of count orgaz
(click once or twice on the picture to see it even larger)

The painting is so grand, it opens heaven up to our contemplation.

But for many of us the most excellent thing about the painting is…the vestments worn by the saintly clerics.

If you zoom in on St. Stephen’s dalmatic, you can see–right beside the little boy, who is supposedly painted to resemble El Greco’s son–a tiny little El Greco painting of the first Christian martyrdom, as embroidery on the vestment. (St. Stephen is the first martyr.)

The Pope Brought the Springtime

I have come to proclaim anew, as Peter proclaimed on the day of Pentecost, that Jesus Christ is Lord and Messiah, risen from the dead, seated in glory at the right hand of the Father, and established as judge of the living and the dead. –Pope Benedict XVI, Nationals’ Park, April 17, 2008

slapshot…I saw Slapshot, the Caps’ mascot, yesterday evening–just moments before the beginning of the first playoff game against the Rangers.

Slapshot was fired up.

The mascot was ready to fight and take no prisoners.

But the actual hockey players were not. And

…Today our Holy Father turns 82.

One year ago, they sang Happy Birthday to him at the White House.

Bush Pope USThe Pope brought the springtime last April. And it has arrived on cue again, on his birthday.

Please allow me to point out that–when the Successor of St. Peter visited the United States–he landed at Andrews Air Force Base, in Prince George’s County.

The Vicar of Christ set foot in P.G.

He also, of course, visited the District.

Not that I want to stir up rivalry among the local jurisdictions. But the Pope never went to Montgomery County or Northern Virginia.

maries…Helen Alvare makes an excellent point in her essay about Notre Dame’s invitation to President Obama.

Her point is: Notre Dame’s explanations make no sense, and the Catholic Church is supposed to make sense.

…If you want to see some beautiful manuscript illuminations, click here.

To see them in person, go to the National Gallery of Art on the Mall before the end of July. You can also see beautiful paintings of Dutch cities in happier days, like this: