The Sistine Chapel

24 Apr

Up very early this morning as it gets crowded quickly for the Sistine chapel. The entrance is off to the right of St. Peters square via the museum. As most people are aware Michelangelo painted the frescos in the chapel even though instead he wanted to create sculptures. When the Pope says jump you would generally say how high?
There are many different types of artwork to look at ranging from frescos, sculptures & beautiful tapestries. Even the floors are something to behold. The works displayed start from early roman period through to much later times. The amazing thing about the ceilings would definitely they look like carvings when they are actually painted, the shadowing effect is used superbly. Even in the photos they looked carved.
Once you enter a certain zone you are not allowed to photograph anything of the chapel, silence for what there was is golden and occasionally the guards will clap loudly and ask for SILENCE!! It lasts all of a minute and a half and the room is buzzing. The ceiling of the chapel was designed to represent the flow of history from the genesis from which God created day, night, life the universe and basically everything through to Noah and his boat to the drunkness of Noah. This is displayed through the middle of the ceiling from end to end and best viewed walking backwards to read the story properly. Then there is the depiction of the prophets including Jonah & Ezekiel and many more. There is also the famous fresco that everyone knows, the act of God reaching to Adam with his finger giving him the breath of life. It’s quite small and I always believed that it ordained a whole wall when in fact, it’s rather underwhelming in size.
On the rear wall Michelangelo has painted the end of time with Jesus and Mary in the middle with people rising to heaven with aid of the angels, and the dammed on their way  to hell with angels pushing them back down as they try to escape. There are different saints represented with various implements that they were executed with. St. Paul with a sword, St.Peter was crucified upside down has the keys to heaven. One of the saints was skinned alive, his picture has him holding what was his skin, the skin has the face of Michelangelo as the form of his signature. Another saint has a broken wheel with spikes, she had her body broken with a wheel of spikes before she was killed. The representation of the devil was Michelangelo’s form of sarcasm. The person depicted was a certain cardinal that didn’t like Michelangelo and went to the pope who had commissioned the painting to have him change it, the pope said its a one thing to do things on earth but he has no sway what happens in heaven or hell.
All in all the actual chapel is quite small, I was impressed but unfortunately not as much as I wanted. I’m going to download some photos from the internet to attach to the holiday snaps.

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