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. The best-documented artist of the 16th century, Michelangelo is most famous for his sculpts of David and the Pieta. 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.
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