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Michelangelo’s Artwork Presentation

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  • I was drawn to Michelangelo’s works because of:
    • His unique style of art;
    • He has been considered the greatest artist of all times;
    • Michelangelo’s famous works like David and Pieta also drew my attention;
Michelangelo’s Artwork
Figure 1. David. Marble, height 5.17 meters (17ft) ,year 1501-1504 (Ormiston, 2010) .
Figure 2. Pieta. Marble, height 174cm, width 195cm, year 1499-1500 (Ormiston, 2010).

Michelangelo’s Biographical Information

  • Michelangelo was born in 1475 in Caprese Italy.
  • He studied grammar as a young boy in Florence.
  • When he was thirteen he became an art apprentice to Domenico Ghirlandaio, a painter.
  • Michelangelo studied at the Humanist Academy, which taught neo platonic philosophies (Johnson, 2005).
  • Michelangelo was taught sculpture by Bertoldo di Giovanni.
  • Michelangelo was a renaissance artist and his works were greatly influenced by humanism.
  • He viewed the human body as a piece of art (Johnson, 2005).
Michelangelo’s Biographical Information Michelangelo’s Biographical Information
Figure 3. Bacchus. Marble, height 203cm, year 1496-1497 (Ormiston, 2010).

Michelangelo’s Themes

  • The dominant themes in Michelangelo’s work are religion and humanism.
  • The theme of religion is seen in his works like: The painting on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.
  • “The down fall of man”; the paintings represented catholic doctrines (Johnson, 2005).
  • Certain Michelangelo’s works like the “Battle of the Centaurs” bring out special themes.
  • This sculpture brings out the theme of “civilization over savagery”.
  • Greek theme like “Greeks over barbarians “can also be seen in these sculpture (Johnson, 2005).
Michelangelo’s Themes Michelangelo’s Themes
The Creation of Adam
Figure 4. The Creation of Adam. Fresco painting, 1504-1512, Sistine Chapel Rome (Ormiston, 2010).
The Conversion of Saul
Figure 5. The Conversion of Saul. Fresco Painting, 625cm by 661cm, year 1542-1545 (Ormiston, 2010).
The Crucifixion of St. Peter
Figure 6. The Crucifixion of St. Peter. Fresco Painting , 625cm by 662cm, year 1546-1550 (Ormiston, 2010).

Michelangelo’s Media

  • Michelangelo works included architecture, paintings and sculpture- which was his preferred form.
  • He curved his sculptures from marble and wood.
  • He created his paintings using fresco paint.
  • Fresco painting was done on wet plaster (Johnson, 2005).
Michelangelo's  Media
Figure 7. Crucifix. Polychrome wood, 142cm by 135cm, year 1492 (Ormiston, 2010).
Laurentian Library
Figure 8. Laurentian Library. Architecture , 1523-1559, Basilica of San Lorenzo (Ormiston, 2010).

Michelangelo’s Techniques

  • Michelangelo’s painting technique was three –dimensional.
  • Sculptors over the years have not understood how Michelangelo made his sculptures.
  • His sculpting technique resembled a relief; the front was perfectly curved while the back part looked cluttered (Ocvirk, 1994).
  • Michelangelo’s carvings were dynamic and based on infinite planes.
  • He did not pay attention to his preparatory drawings while curving.
  • He used the bow drill in most of his carvings and refined them using gradina-toothed chisel (Hibbard, 1985).
Michelangelo’s Techniques Michelangelo’s Techniques

Michelangelo’s Concept and Process

  • Michelangelo conceptualized sculpture as the finest form of art because it resembles divine creation.
  • This concept is referred to as disegno.
  • Michelangelo does not reveal the process he uses in his art.
  • However, it is agreed that his process was influenced by the idealized human form (Hibbard, 1985).
Michelangelo’s Concept and Process
Madonna of the Stairs
Figure 9. Madonna of the Stairs. Marble, 55.5 by 40cm, year 1491(Ormiston, 2010).

Michelangelo’s Style

  • Michelangelo was the founder of the mannerist style.
  • The mannerist style was characterized by theatrical lighting, collapsed perspective, irrational settings, and balanced poses.
  • Michelangelo’s style tremendously influenced contemporary art (Hibbard, 1985).
Michelangelo’s Style

Michelangelo’s Studio Practice

  • Michelangelo’s studio practice included using fresco paint and the smooth method of painting that was not manually tangible.
  • His studio practice resulted in the creation of smooth features that could be seen but not touched.
  • Michelangelo freely curved his sculptures (Hibbard, 1985).
Michelangelo’s Studio Practice

Public and Artists Reception of Michelangelo’s Works

  • Michelangelo’s works were considered the greatest pieces during his time.
  • In the modern times, Michelangelo’s works have been considered the greatest artistic works of all time.
  • Artists like Giorgio Vasari have viewed and regarded Michelangelo’s works as master-pieces (Hibbard, 1985).
  • Michelangelo’s “Last Judgment” attracted varied responses among his critiques.
  • Those who opposed the art claimed that it showed arrogance and abuse of art.
  • However, his proponents argued that the art portrayed a sense of beauty (Hibbard, 1985).
Public and Artists Reception  of Michelangelo’s Works Public and Artists Reception  of Michelangelo’s Works
The Last Judgment
Figure10. The Last Judgment. Fresco Painting, 625cm by 661cm, year 1542-1545 (Ormiston, 2010).

My Opinion on Michelangelo’s Works

  • After reading and seeing the images of Michelangelo’s works, my opinion about his works greatly changed.
  • This is because I saw how his style, techniques , methods, and pieces of art were unique.
  • His works also showed magnificent creativity and excellence.
My Opinion  on Michelangelo’s Works 


Hibbard, H. (1985). Michelangelo. Cambridge, MA: Harper & Row.

Johnson, G. A. (2005). Renaissance art : A very short introduction.. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Ocvirk, O. G. (1994). Art fundamentals : Theory and practice. Madison, WI: W.M.C. Brown Publishers.

Ormiston, R. (2010). Michelangelo : His life and works in 500 images. London : Lorenz.

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