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Michelangelo

Michelangelo’s grocery list… a piece of art

When we think about Michelangelo, Raffaello and many other artists who left their indelible sign in the history of art, we always think about their artworks that leave us breathless every time we look at them.

But we never think they were also (almost) ordinary people and they used to do all the things that ordinary people do.

If they were living nowadays they would be probably using Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and their thoughts, opinions and ideas would be spread in real time all over the world. What we know about their everyday life has been written in books and probably we will never know most of the things…

However, this important and, somehow, amusing document tells us a bit more of what Michelangelo was dealing with on a daily basis. And guess why he draw all the items? Because he was an over-ambitious artist? Wrong! His servant was an illiterate person therefore he wasn’t able to read! Can you understand what Michelangelo wanted his housekeeper to buy for him?

And don’t forget that if you want your doodles and scribbles to become famous “artwork” first of all you must realize something as famous as the Sistine Chapel…. at least…

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You’re now entering the Sistine Chapel… Mind the masterpiece

You have probably heard a lot about the Sistine Chapel, about Michelangelo and you have seen the most famous fragments of this masterpiece. However, there a several curious facts that you (probably) didn’t know…

When the Pope Julius asked Michelangelo to paint the Sistine Chapel, he refused because he considered himself a sculptor rather than a painter. Michelangelo, who didn’t have any experience with painting the frescoes, has invented a unique system of scaffoldings that allowed him to stand upright and paint the ceiling.

It is thought that in the section named “The Creation of Adam”, the image of the God and angels has the shape of a human brain. With this metaphor Michelangelo probably wanted to represent the bestowal of intellect to the human being.

Since 1492 the Sistine Chapel is hosting the papal conclaves, during which the new pope is elected. The chimney on the top emanates the smoke, which in case of the election of the new pope is white, while the black smoke indicates that nobody of the candidates didn’t receive 2/3 majority.

After seeing the sketches of the Sistine Chapel, one of the Pope’s assistants, Biagio da Cesena, has been criticizing the artwork saying that the paintings are more suitable for a tavern than for a chapel. As revenge, Michelangelo has painted Biagio da Cesena as a devil at the bottom right of the Last Judgement.

Among other characters of Michelangelo’s Last Judgement there is Saint Bartholomew. It is believed that the human skin in Saint Bartholomew’s hand is actually a self-portrait of Michelangelo himself. You would probably like to know also why he portrayed himself like this, right?

To learn in depth all the curiosities of this masterpiece choose the unique opportunity with one of our excellent and passionate guides. It will give you all precious details and behind-the-scenes of Michelangelo’s artwork.

All these facts (and more) can be explored on our Vatican Tour & Sistine Chapel Group Tour and Early Vatican VIP Tour.

Just imagine how many things you could discover by entering there after learning exactly what all these depicted figures are representing. Have a look!

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