Title Creator Date Era City Countrysort icon Emotional Sum (Sense of Life or emotional World View) Theme
Pirelli Calendar Diver Photographer: Uwe Ommer 1984 Italy

Women can be strong, dynamic and unconsciously beautiful.

David Sculptor: Michelangelo Buonarotti 1504 1500s Florence Italy

Man is a strong, indomitable creature who has the intelligence to overcome terrible odds.

[requires assumption of some context of this work -- not a "cold" introduction to it]: A man able to face a daunting task, with tremulous calm and determination. This is the depiction of the David/Goliath story of the Bible in which David takes on the much more formidable Goliath and wins.

Black Stallion Director: Carroll Ballard 1979 Sardinia Italy

Everything is possible between boy and beast, between an innocent human and mother nature.

Man and nature in harmony. At least this is the theme of the first half of the movie. See "Description" and "Context" info below for more on this comment.

Niobe Sculptor: unknown c. 200 BC Rome Italy

Human action is beautiful.

Life is movement.

Pieta Sculptor: Michelangelo Buonarotti 1500 1500s Rome Italy

Life is acceptance of pain. Resignation in the face of tragedy.

Resignation and sorrow for a great personal loss.

Ebben? Ne andrò lontana (aria from La Wally) Composer: Alfredo Catalani 1892 1851-1900 Milan Italy

Longing is the overall emotional tone of the music. The lyric gives reason to this overall tone.

Sadness at having to leave forever the place where you were happy once.

Wisdom and Strength Painter: Paolo Veronese 1580c 1500s Venice? Italy

Sumptuousness is good, and the human form is good.

Rape of Polyxena, The Sculptor: Pio Fedi 1866 1800s Florence Italy

Strength and complex beauty are central. Vitality, passion and action are hallmarks of this work.

Life is complex strife, entwined with strong god-like characters.

Three Graces Sculptor: Antonio Canova 1814 1800s Italy

The female human form is beautiful, graceful, ideal.

Quiet repose and sisterly love. The piece exudes a quiet elegance and peacefulness amidst the complex three-dimensional composition. The inclusion of "sisterly love" is less certain, except that taking into account the mythological background of the piece. It can be argued that one should not take that into account, so perhaps that should not formally be included in the theme.

Old Man with a Young Boy Painter: Domenico Ghirlandaio 1490 1400s Florence Italy

Human companionship or family closeness is real.

Quiet familial love. (A grandfather (perhaps) gazing upon a grandson, and vice versa, in a clear moment of happy communion.)

Monster, The Director: Roberto Benigni 1994 1991-2010 Italy

Just laughter and more of the same.

Real Chiesa di San Lorenzo (Royal Church of St. Lawrence) Architect: Guarino Guarini 1680 1600s Torino (Turin) Italy

The world is perfected. The joy of seeing complexity that is simplicity, i.e., that the rich complex vision arises from simple elements which because of their arrangement provide layers of visual thrills.

Complex, soaring geometric order.

Laocoon (Laocoön and His Sons) Sculptor: Agesander 1st century BCE to 1st century CE 500 BCE - 1 CE Rome Italy

Life is a desperate, agonizing struggle.

The heroic but agonizing defeat of Men. This sculpture certainly represents at the same time the heroic nature of men but cast into an impossible situation that can only be tragic.

La Gomena (The Boat Tow-er) Painter: Ettore Tito 1909 1900s Rome Italy

There is great effort in life, and a woman can be the master of it. This painting is a curious combination of romantic heroism and 19th century genre naturalism. It has a visual dynamism and dramatic content that is strongly romantic, yet the subject is the prosaic task of pulling a boat out of the water.

The will and the power of a woman. Implacable determination.

Confectionary Basket from Japan, Fukui region Designer: Anonymous unknown Japan

Life can be dynamic and purposeful and intriguing -- because of the dynamic form and economy of materials and diagonal symmetry of the composition.

Crane Under the Rain Ohara, Shoson: 1928 1900s Japan

Life is difficult.

Rashomon Director: Akira Kurosawa 1950 1931-1950 Japan

The world is terrible and full of disasters and mankind is awful and pathetic.

Objectivity is a myth -- everyone sees a different reality, a different "story".

Senso-ju Temple at Asakusa Hiroshige: 1840s c 1800s Tokyo Japan

Pure, simple, quiet tranquility.

Composition with Red Yellow Blue and Black Painter: Piet Mondrian 1921 The Hague Netherlands

[Seems mute]

Wait for Your Soldier Singing Group: Soviet Army Chorus and Band unknown mid-20th century 1900s Russia

Happiness triumphs.

The power of joy to motivate action.

Trustee from the Toolroom Author: Nevil Shute 1960 United Kingdom

A feeling of gentleness, kindness and generosity towards good people in the world.

The importance of pursuing one's personal values.

Othello: the Moor of Venice Playwright: William Shakespeare 1603 1600s Stratford-on-Avon United Kingdom

Malevolence and horrible tragedy is unrelieved.  Evil is potent.

A great man can be gullible and controlled by an evil character.  Or, an evil character can have potency in the world, because of the weakness of a good man.

Rembrandt Director: Korda Alexander 1936 1931-1950 United Kingdom

Life is hard as an independent spirit, and wealth will elude you, but you will be happy, after a fashion.

Chocolat Director: Lasse Hallstrom 2000 United Kingdom

Pleasure is good; religion and conventional thinking is bad.

Follow your dream and disregard convention.

I'll See You Again Composer: Noel Coward 1929 1900s Manchester United Kingdom

Life is bittersweet

Sweet memories of love last forever