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Current time:0:00Total duration:4:38

Video transcript

we've just walked into the main nave and it's this enormous gorgeous space what is interesting when you walk in here and you have this emphasis of drawing you towards the apse from other the colonnade on either side helps that enormously as well as the clerestory above which really does create this beautiful rhythm and draw sky with light to straight down to the earth to the altar but it also gives you an idea of what a 5th century ad Basilica would have looked like and perhaps in many ways gives you an idea at the basilica's that you would have found in and around the area of the Roman Forum this is really in a sense a crystallization of dancing of those architectural forms and you've also got a whole symbol of authority attached to this as well given that the pagan basilica's are places of law where the judge could well be the Emperor if needed also if you stick to it if you are bankrolling a new religion in the 4th century AD perhaps you're going to build something that you know how to build these were proven spaces they could hold a tremendous number of people exactly so really instead of the altar there we might actually see the emperor seated ancient Basilica you would had a chair at the bank ok the catheter where the Emperor or the judge would have been able to pronounce his pronouncements just like today the bishop or the titular Cardinal or the Pope or something that's all they as attending to do that today and maybe even in your pagan because you probably would have a little altar in honor of Minerva the goddess of knowledge so what are the oldest elements in the in the room well the oldest elements that we consider a heavily restored it has to be said it's the triumphal ash that we can see here with some beautiful 5th century AD mosaics of life and times of the Madonna and then the mosaics that we see just above the Capitol oh the clerestory these again are 5th century AD very heavily restored and again you've got a whole series of stories with these beautiful frames these squares above the actual columns of many important stories from the Old Testament Abraham Isaac Moses Joshua and again perhaps you've got this idea of you're coming in here you're finding the Judaic roots of Christianity the Old Testaments lead you to its then lead you to the coming of them seiyya interesting okay and the mother of god who is none other than Mary herself we're approaching now the high altar which is incredibly elaborate but altar where the Pope or his delegate can give mass behind the birth of Christ or Dormition yeah of Mary and then in heaven being crowned here is wonderful sort of like Imperial sort of like a throne of the mandala though yes look at it there what would I see when I look at this and this is something that certainly can be debated is I think with this Roman art that was seen in latter part of the 13th century Pietro Cavallini Giotto okay achoo moo moo also you're also beginning to see reverberations of the Renaissance often we talk about a renaissance being a 15th century art movement here but I think you can see that we've got a sense of depth suggest be really list of El is just beginning to develop there is a kind of attention to the physicality of the body that's right and also a sense of space and depth and also perhaps the portraiture figures a sense of individuality and you've also got a sense of landscape in some ways a sense of architecture in some ways so you look at the Madonna's face there yes there is an element that says it's strongly bitten time but there's also an element there that is a tender young woman absolutely I think there's a willingness to to experiment and to move beyond the traditions that had been relatively stable yes for some time I think here to a degree in mosaic is perhaps a little bit more difficult to create a sense of depth and movement that you're going to see with our nice songs but I think you could see an inkling yeah well you know those figures are seated Mary and Christ are they're not in in the way that some some of the more Byzantine Darrell that's right I'm not flat they you know you can there's a sense of their gravity it's a sense of their mass space and the way and a little bit of foreshortening actually yeah and of course this will bloom into the work of Masaccio blue mentioned work of the high renaissance ultimately but of course at this moment we have no idea where that's not but maybe we can just see a fledgling sort of like very fledgling seeds being sown here certainly an openness to our physicality that i think was more absolutely rejecting centuries earlier yeah definitely