Statues of David

Topics: Michelangelo, Florence, David Pages: 3 (1020 words) Published: July 2, 2005
The pieces of art I will be comparing and contrasting are the three statues of David, by Donatello (Donato di Niccolò di Betto Bardi), Michelangelo (Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni), and Bernini (Gian Lorenzo Bernini). The statues are modeled after the biblical David, who was destined to become the second king of Israel. Also most famously known as the slayer of the Philistine giant Goliath with a stone and a sling. The sculptures are all based on the same biblical hero, but differ from one another. Each David is unique in its own certain way.

A good deal is known about Donatello's life and career, but little is known about his character. Donatello was born in Florence, Italy in 1386 and died in 1466; he was never married and had no children. He was a master of sculpture in bronze and marble and is considered to be one of the greatest Italian Renaissance artists of his time. The first sculpture is of Donatello's David, 1425-1430. Its material is bronze and stands 5' 2 ¼" and is currently located at Museo Nazionale del Bargello, Florence. The sculpture is a nude and is contrapposto. The scene being depicted is after the clash with Goliath. Donatello's statue of David was the first large scale, free-standing nude statue of the Renaissance. The sculpture helps to strike a balance between classicism and the realism by presenting a very real image of a boy in the form of a classical nude figure. Although Donatello was inspired by classical figures, he did not choose a Greek youth in his prime as a model for his David. Instead, he chooses a barely developed adolescent boy whose arms appeared weak due to the lack of muscles. After defeating Goliath, whose head lies at David's feet, he rests his sword by his side. It seems almost impossible that such a young boy as David could have accomplished such a task. The look portrayed on David himself too seems doubtful of the deed, as he glances down towards Goliath's head at his feet.


References: Emil Kren and Daniel Marx. (2005). DONATELLO Biography. Retrieved 05/28/2005, from
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NA. (2005, 05/27). Michelangelo Buonarroti. Retrieved 05/28/2005, from
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