3. Michelangelo, Pietà
Michelangelo, Pietà, marble, 1498-1500 (Saint Peter's Basilica, Rome) Speakers: Dr. Beth Harris and Dr. Steven Zucker. The Pietà was a popular subject among northern european artists. It means Pity or Compassion, and represents Mary sorrowfully contemplating the dead body of her son which she holds on her lap. This sculpture was commissioned by a French Cardinal living in Rome. Look closely and see how Michelangelo made marble seem like flesh, and look at those complicated folds of drapery. It is important here to remember how sculpture is made. It was a messy, rather loud process (which is one of the reasons that Leonardo claimed that painting was superior to sculpture!). Just like painters often mixed their own paint, Michelangelo forged many of his own tools, and often participated in the quarrying of his marble -- a dangerous job. When we look at the extraordinary representation of the human body here we remember that Michelangelo, like Leonardo before him, had dissected cadavers to understand how the body worked.
4. Michelangelo, Moses
Michelangelo, Moses, marble, ca. 1513-15 (San Pietro in Vincoli, Rome) Speakers: Dr. Beth Harris, Dr. Steven Zucker. Usually considered unfinished, these sculptures were originally intended for the tomb of Pope Julius II. According to the Louvre, the artist gave the marbles to Roberto Strozzi who presented them to the King of France.
6. Michelangelo, David
Michelangelo, David, marble, 1501-04 (Galleria dell'Accademia, Florence) A conversation with Khan Academy's Dr. Steven Zucker and Dr. Beth Harris. His perfect beauty reminds me of Pico della Mirandola, who imagines God saying to man at the creation, “Thou shalt have the power out of thy soul’s judgment to be reborn into the higher forms which are divine.” Here is Vasari’s description of David, …nor has there ever been seen a pose so easy, or any grace to equal that in this work, or feet, hands and head so well in accord, one member with another, in harmony, design, and excellence of artistry. (Translated by Gaston du C. de Vere) Michelangelo’s David stands nearly 17 feet tall. Remember that the biblical figure of David was special to the citizens of Florence—he symbolized the liberty and freedom of their republican ideals, which were threatened at various points in the fifteenth century by the Medici family and others. Watch a video about the importance of the figure of David for Florence.
7. Carving marble with traditional tools
Watch a sculptor demonstrate the use of traditional tools—such as the tooth chisel, the point chisel, the drill, and the rasp—as he creates a finished figure from a block of marble. Love art? Follow us on Google+
8. Michelangelo, Slaves
Michelangelo, The Slaves (commonly referred to as the Dying Slave and the Rebellious Slave), marble, 2.09 m high, 1513-15 (Musée du Louvre, Paris) Speakers: Dr. Beth Harris and Dr. Steven Zucker Usually considered unfinished, these sculptures were originally intended for the tomb of Pope Julius II. According to the Louvre, the artist gave the marbles to Roberto Strozzi who presented them to the King of France.
10. Michelangelo, Ceiling of the Sistine Chapel (including the Creation of Adam)
Michelangelo, Ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, 1508-12, fresco (Vatican, Rome) Speakers: Dr. Beth Harris, Dr. Steven Zucker
12. Michelangelo, Studies for the Libyan Sibyl (recto); Studies for the Libyan Sibyl and a small Sketch for a Seated Figure (verso)
Met curator Carmen Bambach on the presence of genius in Michelangelo Buonarroti’s Studies for the Libyan Sibyl (recto); Studies for the Libyan Sibyl and a small Sketch for a Seated Figure (verso), c. 1510–11. This is the most magnificent drawing by Michelangelo in the United States. A male studio assistant posed for the anatomical study, which was preparatory for the Libyan Sibyl, one of the female seers frescoed on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel (Vatican Palace) in 1508-12. In the fresco, the figure is clothed except for her powerful shoulders and arms, and has an elaborately braided coiffure. Michelangelo used the present sheet to explore the elements that were crucial in the elegant resolution of the figure's pose, especially the counterpoint twist of shoulders and hips and the manner of weight-bearing on her toe. Recent research shows that this sheet of studies was owned by the Buonarroti family soon after Michelangelo's death. The "no. 21" inscribed on the verso of the sheet (at lower center) fits precisely into a numerical sequence found on many other drawings by the artist that have this early Buonarroti family provenance. View this work on metmuseum.org. Are you an educator? Here's a related lesson plan. For additional educator resources from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, visit Find an educator resource.
13. Michelangelo, Ceiling of the Sistine Chapel Quiz
This quiz is for the video Michelangelo, ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.
15. Michelangelo, Last Judgment (altar wall, Sistine Chapel)
Michelangelo, Last Judgment, Sistine Chapel Ceiling, fresco, 1534-1541 (Vatican City, Rome) Speakers: Dr. Beth Harris, Dr. Steven Zucker
17. Michelangelo, Laurentian Library
Michelangelo, Laurentian Library (vestibule and reading room), begun 1524, opened 1571, San Lorenzo, Florence
Current time: 0:00Total duration: 7:58
0 energy points
Michelangelo, Laurentian Library (vestibule and reading room), begun 1524, opened 1571, San Lorenzo, Florence. Created by Beth Harris and Steven Zucker.