Life of the Party in the Sistine Chapel’s Ceiling

Since we have been discussing the Sistine Chapel, I thought you would like to see the picture that the Huffington Post put together to celebrate the 500th anniversary of the ceiling a couple of days ago:

imageAnd the article reads:

Five hundred years ago today [(November 1)] every single fresco was put to shame when the painted ceiling of the Sistine Chapel was first revealed to the public. The painted work embodies the artistic lifeblood of the High Renaissance and serves as a living tapestry of spirituality, visual storytelling and bodies in motion. The Chapel also inaugurated the artistic tradition of luring in a gigantic amount of tourists, craning their necks, sweating profusely and jostling to get a prime position beneath a work of genius. We’d like to honor that tradition on this joyous anniversary.

Pope Julius II commissioned Michelangelo to create the Vatican’s most prized work of eye-candy. After enlisting other big-name artists like Raphael, Botticelli and Ghirlandaio to paint other parts of the chapel, the Pope had particularly high hopes for the ceiling, wishing to imbue it with layers of complexity and multiple meanings, some of which are still being unpacked today. Although Michelangelo was foremost a sculptor before taking on what would become his most legendary accomplishment, his mastery of the male form seemed to translate effortlessly from marble to canvas.