Note: To protect the privacy of our members, e-mail addresses have been removed from the archived messages. As a result, some links may be broken.

Find Lesson Plans on! GettyGames

Re: Ability and Effort


From: Patricia Knott (pknott_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Wed Aug 01 2001 - 09:41:21 PDT

> From: "Larry Seiler" <>

>> The evidence "Michelangelo was
>> doing drawings at 6" might be explained if we knew he had
>> encouraging, positive experiences with Art prior to that age.
> I just thought as a side note, I'd mention an A&E tape I have which reported
> Michaelangelo receiving severe beatings from his father when he said he
> wanted to be an artist. Roughly from what I remember, about at 12 years of
> age. Not being able to beat it out of him, his father made connections
> necessary for him to apprentice and study.

I believe you are correct. I also recall that it was the husband ( a stone
carver) of his wet nurse who took him under wing. It was Lorenzo de Medici
who discovered him at age 15 and gave him the opportunities and treated him
"as a son."

Picasso's early life is also very interesting. He was fixated on the death
of his little sister and feared abandonment. I recall a story about his
fears. His father raised pigeons or doves and adored them. Picasso took the
birds to school one day, because he was sure his father would come for the
birds, not so sure his father would come for him.

I am searching for a book that I had (I must have loaned it and it wasn't
returned) It was a study Harold Gardner did on the geniuses of the 20th
century (Picasso among them). Gardner was trying to find something in
common. The only factor he found they all shared was strong support from at
least one parent.