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February 26, 1956 - Image 12

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Publication:
Michigan Daily, 1956-02-26
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Page Six

THE MICHIGAN DAILY

Sunday, February 26 1956

Sunday, February 26, 1956

THE MICHIGAN DAILY

Page Six THE MICHIGAN DAILY Sunday, February 26, 1956 Sunday. February 26, 1956 THE MICHIGAN DAILY

.._ .. _ ,
-71

The

Baroque

Genius

Bernini

J7

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NNrl

,S

ROME

Festival Gimmick

Sports

City of Three

Ages

PIAZZO NAVONA WITH THE FOUNTAIN OF THE FOUR RIVERS AT
THE END OF THE SQUARE
I

AN AMERICAN in Rome findsc
his thirst quenched by chi-
anti, hunger appeased by pasta,
and his eyes and mind occupied1
with Roman art and Roman his-
tory.
Within a day of his arrival he'
seeks the lower depths of the'
sunken forum floor, the lofty ceil-
ings of the Sistine Chapel, and
the magnitude of St. Peter's.
He knows of ancient Rome, and
he knows of Michelangelo's and
Raphael's painting which repre-
sent the Renaissance in Rome. But
what he probably knows little
about is the fantastic career of
the Baroque giant Bernini.
IN ACTUALITY there are at least
three "Romes," usually term-
ed ancient, Baroque, and modern,
with the painting of the Renai-
ssance masters representing a
fourth age.
Elements of the old and new
city are somewhat intermingled,
but the modern city, exemplified
by the shining glass in the rail-
road station and the old city are
somewhat separated from the
heart of Rome today.
Most of the modern buildings
lie outside the alleyways, long
narrow streets, and old though
often beautiful buildings of down-
town Roma.
The remains of the ancient city
are set in one part of the town
as it stands today. It is on a level
several feet below the. modern
boulevard which slices through the
major portion of the forum, and
reflects in grand scale the splen-
dor of the ancient rulers.
The Via Del Foro is a broad
street jutting through the huge
remains in shinning contrast of
two eras. At the end of it stands
the Coliseum, a gigantic structure
which has outlived men and stands
unperturbed by man's meager
ways.
BUT THESE are landmarks to
visitors, and known the world

over. What the tourist may be
quite surprised to realize is the
dominance of Baroque Rome in
the heart of the city, and the sig-.
nificance of Gian Lorenzo Berini
--whose art is the epitomy of Bar-
oque statement. He left the mark
of his age on a city of great ages.
His fountains dot the city and
have inspired Romans and visitors
alike, served as inspirational force
for Ottorino Respighi's tone poem,
"The Fountains of Rome."
Bernini's sculpture embellishes
several churches and museums in
the city. His architectural accom-
plishments are on such a huge
scale that man has difficulty in
grasping the magnitude of the
dimensions of his work.
His fountains appear at the ends
of narrow streets, and become a
focus of light, space, and vitality.
IN THE SPACIOUS Piazza Bar.
berini, a center of downtown
Rome, stands Bernini's earliest
great fountain, the fountain of
The Triton, a maritime theme
which he repeated fifteen years
later in the Fontana Del Moro.
In the middle of the Piazza Na-
vona stands the Fountain of the
Four Rivers, representing the Nile,
Danube, Ganges and Plata Rivers.
Bernini's largest scale work in this
field, it was completed in 1651.
WHEREAS his fountains are
vital elements of baroque
Rome's piazzas, Bernini's fame is .
on an even grander scale in the
realm of sculpture.
His earliest works found at the
Borghesi Gallery are naturalistic,
polished marble works of an ecsta-.
tic nature.
HE PLACEMENT of such works
in small churches, hardly to
be expected to house famed and
valued works of art, is typical of
Rome's itimacy.
Many churches possess master-
pieces which museums long for.
They are often poorly lighted and
See ROME, Page 7

By ERNEST THEODOSSIN
AMERICANS glancing over ad-
vertisements for obscure Amer-
ican and foreign films often find
such choice information revealed
as "Winner of YXZ Film Festival
Award" or GFD Prize Festival
Winner."
These tags refer to a new pub-
licity stunt called "Film Festivals,"
probably the most ingenious ad-
vertising gimmick since radio lis-
teners were bombarded with "Tal-
lulah the Tube" several years ago.
Film festivals were initiated by
an unknown press agent in 1932
and since the last World War
they have become commonplace
throughout the world, from Edin-
burgh, Scocland to Junta del Esta,
Uruguay and most civilized nations
can boast atleast one, with the
United States being the major
exception.
The festivals at Cannes on the
Riviera in the spring and Venice
in late summer are undoubtedly
the most important, although
Edinburgh and Berlin get their
share -of attention.
COMMON to every festival are
absurd pub-Ity stunts' and
loads of international glamour'
and red tape. A close examination
of goings-on at Cannes, Venice
and Berlin last year will provide
some of the reasons why film fes-
tivals never emerge as anything
more than blends of artiness, ab-
surdity and advertising.
FIRST: Since these festivals oc-
cur in an international setting,
they must observe all the pleasan-
ties and niceties of nineteenth
century political diplomacy.
At Venice, for example, Catholic
pressure forced withdrawal of the
Czechoslovakian film "Jan Hus."
The leftists immediately retaliated
by demanding withdrawal of the
Spanish "Canto del Gallo" dealing
with persecution of a priest by
revolutionaries.

Next, U.S. ambassador to Italy
Clare Booth Luce promised un-
savory repurcussions if Americans
dared show the controversial
"Blackboard Jungle." Everything
worked out all right, and Venetians
got to see such uncontroversial
American opera as Bart Lancaster
in "The Kentuckian," a tale of
frontier America, and "Interrupt-
ed Melody," the melodramatic saga
of an opera singer. t h
SECOND: Many countries, the
United States included, use the
festivals for propaganda purposes
and monetary gains.
Berliners, as an example of the
former, were treated at their festi-
val to "Strategic Air Command,"
the American entry. Hollywood,
together with Washington, felt the
Germans needed a glimpse of
American air power. The film,
which had a maudlin story woven
between plane shots, was greeted
with enthusiastic laughs and boos.
"The Kentuckian," apart from
eing chosen to appease the irrate
Mrs. Luce, was sent abroad be-
cause festival publicity would in-
sure a several-hundred-thousand
dollar increase in box-office re-
ceipts.
THIRD: The festivals are taking
on the appearance of a stunt-
promotion campaign. No longer
need a young starlet announce she
loves men who eat raw beefsteak
to gain attention. She can simply
hop on a plane for Cannes, throw
on a bikini, saunter about the
Riviera beach and pick up a stray
throneless prince: she is sure to
make headlines back home.
FOURTH: Many of the really
important pictures are not entered
into festival competition, but only
shown in conjunction with the fes-
tivals. The-reasons for the "pri-
vate" screenings are not always
clear, but they may at least in
part be inspired by the usual op-
positions and attacks which ac-
company announcements of "in-
ternational" festival juries.

The juries
political lines,
Russia having
judges.

are chosen along
with the U.S. and
equal numbers of

By DAVE GREY

FROM ALL of the foregoing con-
siderations, it is apparent that
film festivals end up as rather
tiresome flukes. Many of the
films shown never reach American
shores because distributors are
afraid to take a financial chance
on them.
Aside from Cannes and Venice,
the other festivals get neither pre-
fabricated glamour nor much at-
tention. Edinburgh formerly con-
centrated solely on documentaries,
but recently other features have
been added to gain wider recogni-
tion. It has not come in any
great manner. America sent over
MGM's wide-screen, Technicolor
fairy tale, "The Glass Slipper." It
did not provoke any enthusiasm
either.
Needless to say, American pro-
ducers are not really very con-,
cerned with these film festivals or
any artistic level. One might dis-
agree with the poor choice of na-
tional films, but better films are
not the only answer to raising
festivals to an artistic level.

N INETEEN - Hundred - ar
Fifty-Six is the year of ir
national athletic competitior
the highest level-the Olyr
Games.
People from all corners of
world will be lookIng ahead to
year's Summer Olympics, w
will be held at Melbourne,
tralia, during North America's
season, November 22 through l
ember 8.
Olympic competition means
1956 will go down in internati
history as another "great"
of amateur competition betv
the leading countries of the W
The United States and the L
S.R., dynamic political forces,
be the two most-talented nat
represented at the Summer Ga
FOR THE traveler abroad,
will still have many of
spectacular and crowd-attrac
events of a non-Olympic ye:
Golf competition on an inte
tional level will start off on
8, at Sandwich, England, w
the women's amateur Curtis
match will be held.
Following the United St
National Open Golf Champior

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