Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Old Testament Kings, Chartres Cathedral

The Chartres Cathedral in France is known for not only its French-gothic architecture, but also the plentiful adornment on just about every surface of its exterior and interior. Pictured above are the "portals" into the cathedral and the bodies of various kings of the Old Testament as well as prophets and other religious figures stretch along the sides of these entrances. 

A more detailed look at the individual reliefs:

These kings, saints, and prophets are extremely elongated, their bodies kept to the same length as those next to it, a sign of more concentration on aesthetic appeal as opposed to realistic characteristics. With their intricate drapery, their bodies also fail to lend themselves to a realistic depiction of the human body. As you can see, the feet are simply just rounded stone, not even featuring toes while neither lending themselves to being called "shoes." The bodies are placed well above the eye-level of those that would be entering into the chapel, a symbol of their loftiness and their holiness. 

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