Michelangelo (1475-1564)

Michelangelo was an Italian Renaissance painter, sculptor, architect, poet and engineer whose name is immediately recognized as an art master. Along with his contemporary and rival Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo is considered an archetype of the Renaissance Man because of his mastery of different skills.

Michelangelo was born near Tuscany, Italy. He began his training in painting with Domenico Ghirlandio and sculpting with Bertoldo DiGiovanni very early in life and showed great aptitude for both trades.

The best-documented artist of the 16th century, Michelangelo is most famous for his sculpts of David and the Pieta. It is said of the latter, It is certainly a miracle that a formless block of stone could ever have been reduced to a perfection that nature is scarcely able to create in the flesh.

Michelangelo also created one of the most recognized Renaissance sculptures, the colossal David, in 1504. A symbol of Florentine freedom, David permanently established Michelangelo s skill as a sculptor with extreme technical care and vivid imagination.

Michelangelo is also known for painting the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel in Rome, which took four years to complete, starting in 1508. He was originally commissioned to paint the 12 apostles, but opted for a more complex theme of Creation, depicting the downfall of man and the promise of salvation. Among the most famous Michelangelo paintings on the Sistine Chapel ceiling is The Creation of Adam.

In addition to magnificent paintings and sculptures, Michelangelo also was a successful architect, having created the faade for the Basilica of San Lorenzo, Medici Chapel and Laurentian Library, all in Florence

In his lifetime, Michelangelo was often called Il Divino, the Divine One, because of his intense spirituality. The awe-inspiring splendor present in Michelangelo paintings and sculptures was much admired and copied by his contemporaries, and led to the highly personal and passionate Mannerism era. For Michelangelo the sculptor, his job was to liberate the forms trapped inside the stone. He believed that every stone had a sculpture within, and it was the job of the sculptor to chip away at whatever was not part of the sculpture, and thus Michelangelo sculptures and paintings have deep symbolism that have transcended time and cultures.

David Bonded Marble Statue
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The Pieta Lunette Wall Sculpture
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Creation, 1508-1512 Canvas Replica Painting
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