THE CREATION OF A MASTERPIECE
The Delphic Sibyl and other views of
THE SISTINE CHAPEL
When will this nightmare be over?
My chin is growing into my stomach,
My beard has become part of my arm,
My face is a mosaic of color,
Now I drink and breathe only paint,
My body is twisted backwards in a circle,
And my sanity is completely gone.
I hate this place.
Why am I here? I'm not even a painter!
1511 Sonnet by Michelangelo
These may be surprising words coming from an artist considered to be among the greatest painters in the history of
western art. When we consider the enormity of the project that inspired this poem -- the painting of the Sistine
Chapel ceiling (all 6,000 square feet of it), which Michelangelo accomplished virtually single-handedly in four years
-- his agony is understandable!
Sculptor, painter, architect and poet -- Michelangelo was all of these, outstanding among a generation of geniuses,
and revered in his own time. Today his name is synonymous with greatness. There is no more remarkable story in
all of art history than that of his amazing achievement -- and that is the subject of this session of GalleryTime.
The Sistine Chapel
Detail - Delphic Sibyl