Michelangelo´s Biography

Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni (March 06, 1475 – February 18, 1564) known as Michelangelo, was an Artist, Painter, Sculptor, Architect and Poet of Florentine origin, regarded as the most important artist of the Italian renaissance.

His work was prolific, highlighting within it as masterpieces the Piety, the David and the frescoes of the Sistine Chapel, which is why he is also listed as one of the most talented artists in history.

Early Life

He was born on 6 March 1475, in the city of Caprese, Italy, into a modest family, being the second son of Leonardo di Buonarroti Simoni and Francesca Neri. Despite being born in Italy, he is recognized as Florentine, as his parents moved to Florence, when he was just a baby.

At the age of 13, Michelangelo began as an apprentice in the workshop of Domenico Ghirlandaio, where he learned the technique of freso.

When he had been in Ghirlandaio’s workshop for a year, Michelangelo had the opportunity to move to the palace of Lorenzo the Magnificent, belonging to the Medici family, where he began to study classical sculpture in the gardens of this powerful family, under the tutelage of Bertoldo di Giovanni.

Contact with the Medeci opened the doors to the Florentine elite, where he met important artists. He also helped him obtain permission from the Catholic Church to study anatomy with corpses, which endowed him with an accurate knowledge of the human body, which translated into his works.

When she turned 16, she was able to sculpt the Battle of the Centaurs and Madona sitting in one step, considered by some to be an early demonstration of her great talent.

However, Lorenzo’s death, the Magnificent, aroused an atmosphere of political conflict, forcing him to flee to Bologna. In 1495, he returned to Florence, where he began working as a sculptor.

Some researchers refer to a story related to a sculpture of “Cupido”, which was apparently artificially aged by its dealer and sold as an antique to Cardinal Riario de San Giorgio, who upon discovering the deception, infuriated by demanding the money delivered was returned to him. However, he was so impressed with Michelangelo’s work that he kept the money, and invited him to Rome.


In 1498, when he had already settled in the present-day Italian captain, Michelangelo consecrated himself, sculpting The Mercy in less than a year. This piece, carved into a single piece of Carrara marble, depicting Jesus deceased on his mother’s lap, is considered one of his masterpieces.

The fluidity of the fabric and the impression of the features achieved in the stone continues to impress the critics. His signature is carved into Mary’s chest, being the only piece signed by him. Some legends suggest that he decided to carve his rubric in such a visible place, in response to comments from some who attributed the work to another sculptor.

The David and the Sistine Chapel

In 1501, he returned to Florence, where he was commissioned to sculpt the David, for which he was given a piece of marble of more than 17 feet, previously worked by two other sculptors.

After three years of work, on May 14, 1504, michelangelo’s David was placed at the entrance of the Palace of the Honourable, demonstrating his great knowledge of anatomy and symbology, becoming by antonomasia the representative piece of the Renaissance. At this time he sculpted the Moses, the Tondo de Taddei, the Baco of Bargello, the Tondo de Pitti and the Virgin with the child.

In May 1508, he was hired by Julius II to decorate the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, a project to which the artist dedicated four years of hard work, making a fresh, contentious of more than 300 human figures, distributed in a dimension of 65 feet, where Michelangelo managed to capture the Christian imaginary. On October 31, 1512, he delivered one of the most famous works of the Renaissance, which he painted himself, for long days, lying on his back.

Architecture and poetry

After completing this ambitious project, Michelangelo turned his interest in Architecture, gave himself to the tomb project of Julius II, the design of the Laurentina Library and the Medici chapel, although his masterpiece is considered the Basilica of St. Peter, in which he participated as Chief Architect in 1546.

In his later years he decided to bring his poetic impulse to writing, placing it in long and romantic love letters, addressed to Vittoria Colonna, a widow of the nobility, to whom he dedicated more than 300 poems and sonnets of love.

He also wrote rather affectionate letters to a young man named Tommaso de’Cavalieri, which have been the subject of debate among some researchers, where some point out that these texts may reveal a homoerotic side of Michelangelo, although others are the subject of debates among some researchers, where these texts may reveal a homoerotic side of Michelangelo, although others are inclined to think that it may simply be a paternal affection.

Final years

She never married. He was known to his contemporaries for his controversial character and great sense of perfectionism, which sometimes resulted in great nonconformity. He also maintained a famous enmity with Leonardo Da Vinci, who had two decades for him. On 18 February 1564, on the verge of his 89th birthday, he died in Rome. His body was taken to Florence, where he was revered by his people as “master of all the arts”.

Image source: periodicoenfoque.com.mx

Michelangelo´s Biography
Source: Education  
July 28, 2019

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