We know, but I think
that the Middle Ages were religious,
in a way that we can't really conceive
I want you now to imagine, if you can,
that you are inside that church,
which you see as a model, and into which
this altarpiece was once placed.
So no big windows,
obviously no electric light,
but a space like this
with very narrow windows.
You're not in the National Gallery,
you're inside that church.
maybe the sound of prayers
being spoken slowly.
to the heavenly realm.
And, if you will, now, just imagine
that you are looking at this painting
by the light of candles.
Candles which flicker. Candles
you can't read, you can't write,
the year is 1377, your houses are
too hot in summer, too cold in winter,
people are dying all the time -
"if I'm good, I can perhaps get up
to the kingdom everlasting,
"where all is good, great and golden
might also happen.
By the flickering candlelight,
these figures were moving.
If they were moving, they were real,
And in a sense,
that's how this painting worked.
I don't mean to make this sound as crude,
perhaps, as I am,
but if you will, for a moment, just imagine
that I've brought from my pocket
and I've pinned it here,
and I've said, "Here are the darts,
aim for the eyes of the grey, fluffy kitten."
It's just a bit of paper, but in some way,
you feel that you might,
So I'm not suggesting to you that,
in the year 1377, or any time onwards,
people felt, "Oh! They're moving!
They're real! They can hear me!"
But with a same kind
I am suggesting to you that
there is a very strong attachment
and the thing itself.
So we're now in the National Gallery,
having a look quite quietly,
colours made from ground pigment.
But what we must remember is how
So, I've tried to sort of pull together
my first thoughts,
and I don't mean this to be a criticism...
I don't... I'm quite keen on criticism.
No, I'm just trying to be very open here.
is that, as an organisation -
I suppose that's probably
a bit why I'm here -
when we have forums together
And I kind of tried to chunk
that up this morning, of,
"How does that manifest itself?"
One is that just, quite simply,
that we don't kind of really talk much
about the public and the visitors.
But actually, I don't think that, when
it comes to a lot of what we talk about,
in some of our meetings
communications out to the public,
and should be.
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"National Gallery" Scripts.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 15 Jan. 2021. <https://www.scripts.com/script/national_gallery_14505>.