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Materials Humans Use

Humans use a tremendous number of resources; here are a few and what they are used for.

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Life from Stone

Life from Stone

Credit: Justin Ennis
Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/averain/5308317230/
License: CC BY-NC 3.0

In every block of marble I see a statue as plain as though it stood before me, shaped and perfect in attitude and action. I have only to hew away the rough walls that imprison the lovely apparition to reveal it to the other eyes as mine see it - Michelangelo

Why It Matters

  • The Pieta is thought by many to be the most beautiful statue ever created.
  • The Italian Renaissance sculptor Michelangelo carved it from Carrara marble.
  • Carrara marble is white or blue-grey; it is the highest quality marble. It is quarried in Tuscany, Italy
  • Carrara marble was used in some of Ancient Rome’s most extraordinary buildings and sculptures, such as the Pantheon.
  • Credit: Dark Rome Tours & Walks
    Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/darkrometours/7351036560/
    License: CC BY-NC 3.0

    The Pantheon (Rome, Italy) [Figure2]

  • Besides his Pieta, Michelangelo used Carrara marble for his sculpture David.

Explore More

With the link below, learn more about Michelangelo’s Pieta. Then answer the following questions.

  1. Where is this Pieta? How is its current position different from what it was after Michelangelo carved it?
  2. How does Michelangelo turn marble into draped cloth?
  3. What is Mary’s facial expression? How does the feeling given off by the position of her left hand differ from that?
  4. What do the commentators think Michelangelo was trying to convey with his Pieta?

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Image Attributions

  1. [1]^ Credit: Justin Ennis; Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/averain/5308317230/; License: CC BY-NC 3.0
  2. [2]^ Credit: Dark Rome Tours & Walks; Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/darkrometours/7351036560/; License: CC BY-NC 3.0

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