I would really like you to see a picture of that sculpture “Ecstasy of St. Therese.” I believe the sculptor is Bernini. I’ve never seen any great works of art in person but I guess I’m familiar with most European Art through books I’ve studied. I once saw a picture of Christ by a Russian artist that really haunted me for a long time. Christ didn’t look anything like the popular beaming Western Christian version of the kindly shepherd we’re used to.
He looked like a man, with a gaunt, lean, sort of haunted face with deep set large dark eyes. You could tell he was pretty tall, angular, rangy, a man alone and I guess that was the most striking thing about the picture. No halo, no radiant beam from heaven above. Just this extraordinary man— this ordinary human being who made himself extra-ordinary and tried to tell us all that it was nothing more than any of us could do. Loneliness and a hint of doubt seemed to fill the picture. I would like to have known the man in that picture.
--Norman Mailer, The Executioner's Song