Our new blog assignment is to talk about whether reading about something or looking at a photo is better or worse than being at the actual place or object. I can personally say, first hand, that seeing the actual object is even better than seeing the photo. My second night at the Hôtel Victoria was spent in the lobby with Dr. Blunt, Ashley, Jacob, Camille, Indy, and JT discussing various things in or about the Louvre. Somehow we began discussing the statue of Cupid and Psyche. This is a well known statue, by Antonio Canova, where Cupid is embracing Psyche from behind. I immediatley was attracted to the statue because it was quite delicate looking and had a lot of movement within the two people despite it being stone. Mind you this is all from one single photograph on the Louvre website.
When we got to the museum the following morning Indy and I took off in our own direction, having been to the Louvre before. We decided to skip The Mona Lisa and go straight to the Roman, etruscan, Greek, and Italian sculptures. We began walking through the many rooms when we got to one of the big halls. Indy and I began walking through. We saw tall sculptures of people, gods, pillars etc. but when we got to the end of the room we saw The Sculpture. At this point in the day I had forgotten the piece was in the museum, but when I saw it I had a bit of a freak out. It was a lot bigger than it had looked in the photo. I thought it was going to be small and delicate, but it was large and strong. However despite the size difference, the people had a lot of delicate features. Cupid’s wings were long and beautiful. Psyche and cupid’s arms and legs were smooth and lithe. They looked like they were alive. I enjoyed seeing the sculpture in person much more than looking at a photograph. If I could, I would take the sculpture home with me, but at least I can look at photos and still get some of the thrill of seeing it.