today i saw my old avatar in person - it was a very moving experience. in a way it was almost like looking at old photos of me as a boy - emotional in a weird way - both distant and very personal. the painting is "Abraham sacrificing Isaac" by Caravaggio. the part of the painting i used when i first came to MS was the face of Isaac and the hand of Abraham on his neck. it expressed the fear and sense of helplessness that i felt at the time.
now i look at it and think - yeah, that used to be me - but i've grown beyond it. i like my new avatar much better - "David with the head of Goliath." unfortunately, that painting wasnpt in the gallery we toured today. but another one that was pretty good was - Reni's version of the same scene:
it is not bad as a substitute - but not my preferred vision. - David seems too nonchalant and jaunty - whereas Caravaggio's version is more resolute and purposeful - but also somber and aware of the magnitude of what has just transpired - as though he might still be haunted by the memories for years to come.
we saw several other versions of Davids too - including Michelangelo's - which - though it is incredible and noble and heroic - just doesn't resonate with my understanding of an adolescent who faced impossible odds - and succeeded in overcoming.
anyway - amazing day - and experience - and glad to say i am identifying with David now - instead of Isaac!