The Vatican Museums
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Now available on DVD for the first time, this historic three-disc collection features seven hours of magnificent documentary film that illuminates and chronicles the great journey of the human spirit. Here then is the world's most spectacular and sacred repository of art, history, and faith.
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Although a visit to Vatican City would be a wonderful experience, this ambitious and handsomely packaged 8-volume roam through the city s museums and buildings is a) much less expensive than a real trip, b) offers a guided tour, and c) uses supporting contextual footage not found in your Fodor (print) handbook. We watched the sixth volume, The Ethnological Museum & The Picture Gallery, which featured a host of well-known (and lesser known) artworks chronicling, in essence, the pictorial history of Christianity, as well as a fascinating overview of religion in non-European cultures (examining death rites, conceptions of deities, and worship habits). As the program traces the early seeds of Christianity in these colonized countries, the artistic artifacts shown (initially, copies of European Christian symbolism) gradually give way to indigenous interpretations of Christianity. In one notable and symbolically complex example, we see a beautifully carved crucifix which depicts Christ bound to a cross comprised of African slaves. A thought-provoking series, this is sure to be quite popular in both academic and general collections. Three Stars. --Video Librarian
This eight volume series showcases Roman, Etruscan, Greek, and Egyptian art in the various Vatican museums; the origins of Christian art and the Sistine Chapel; the Raphael Rooms. the Loggia and the Historical Museum at St.John Lateran; the Ethnological Museum and the Picture Gallery; the collection of modern religious art and the Apostolic Palace; and the Vatican City itself, including the Great Basilica. …a tour-de-force that will inform and dazzle the viewer. …especially recommended as a superb memorial fund acquisition for school or public library video collections. --Wisconsin Bookwatch
Top Customer Reviews
"The birth of the Vatican Museums is usually dated to the accession of Julius II to the Papal throne, though as private treasures of a prince, this first Vatican collection was rather different in nature."
The above are the printed words that begins this impressive set of DVDs that together have one purpose: to allow the viewer to see what's inside one of the world's most spectacular museums by taking him/her on a tour of each museum's highlights.
This documentary surveys the Vatican's artistic treasures through stunning location footage (and even archival footage!) with narration (accompanied by beautiful background music throughout that has the translated lyrics of Michelangelo).
The viewer feels as if he/she is walking through each museum's halls or flying over the outside buildings. The key point here is that the camera is always moving thus avoiding the static and boring feel of just looking at works of art that are just sitting there.
The narrator explains, amongst other things, the history of the artworks, how they came to be in a particular museum, and information is even given about the construction of each museum.
The variety of what's presented was, at least for me, overwhelming. The viewer will see and hear about such things as furniture, tapestries, costumes, and armour, as well as sculptures, busts, statues, paintings, portraits, mosaics, friezes, frescoes, artifacts, and much more.
The interior photography of buildings is exquisite and aerial photography that captures the unique architecture of the exterior of buildings is quite impressive.Read more ›
The DVD is above all expectations. It show everything, and even details, and the explanation is excellent. Even people who doesn't familiar with all the history facts can learn and have a profound understanding of the Vatican and the people who contribute to its glory.
Although English is not my native tongue I could understand everything.
I recommend it to everybody, those who wants to visit the Vatican, or to be reminding of their visit, or those who want to learn and know what it's all about.
This copy that I purchased is for a Christmas gift. My family liked it so much that we wanted to give it as a gift to a special person. All in all a job well done.
In my one trip to the Vatican, I was surprised to find that the museums contain an abundance of non Christian art. I also felt confused that some inclusions seemed to lack rhyme and reason. I look forward to learning more, as I go through other sections of this beautiful three DVD set.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book was a great deal and is a vibrant and interesting book. We still keep going back to it.Published 1 month ago by doc mom
This was purchased as a gift for a relative who visited the Vatican decades ago and is now too old to revisit in person.Published on May 1, 2013 by Mrs. G.
We love museums and have been to the Vatican Museums several times. We also live in a very isolated place and are unable to visit museums locally as there are none anywhere near... Read morePublished on March 20, 2011 by Anthea
Though infinitely sharper than the offerings by KULTUR, what happened to the color? Narration is wonderful, subject matter is glorious. Read morePublished on April 25, 2007 by roderick