Michelangelo Buonarroti

9th Sep 2010Posted in: Michelangelo Buonarroti Comments Off on Insightsful Facts about Michelangelo

Insightsful Facts about Michelangelo

Insightful Facts about Michelangelo by Laura C. Johnson

  • He lived to be 89 years old. Life expectancy during his time was 43 years.
  • Michelangelo did not lie on his back when painting the Sistine Chapel ceiling. He stood.
  • He was involved in a fraud when one of his statues (The Cupid) was almost passed off as a Roman antiquity. He had buried it to make it look old.
  • Michelangelo was uncouth and lived in squalor. He often slept in his clothes and boots.
  • He was rich. He died leaving treasure chests of gold.
  • At the end of his life, Michelangelo destroyed many of his sketches. He did not want people to know how hard he had worked. As recently as 2007, a very rare chalk sketch had been discovered in the Vatican archives.
  • He was 5 feet, 4 inches tall. His masterpiece, David, was carved from a 19-foot-tall block of damaged marble and was finished when he was 29 years old.
  • His father was outraged when, at age 13, Michelangelo announced his apprenticeship to famed artist Domenico Ghirlandaio. In a very unusual act Ghirlandaio, the master, paid student Michelangelo’s father.
  • Michelangelo wrote beautiful lyrical and romantic poetry to several male and female friends in his life.
  • In a way, he thought he was “Superman,” with X-ray vision. He saw the figure in the marble as a prisoner needing to be released.

Laura C. Johnson is a Rockford native and professor of art history who designs and leads tours in Italy and the Mediterranean area. She teaches for Elderhostel

Programs in Italy and lectures for The Art Institute of Chicago in Chicago and Europe. She can be reached at gotravelgirl@yahoo.com.

Read an in depth biography about Michelangelo Buonarroti.

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