Tag Archives: Vatican

Michelangelo and the Sistine Chapel

Destination: Rome


Book: Michelangelo and the Pope’s Ceiling by Ross King

A Journey into Michelangelo’s Rome by Angela K. Nickerson

Number one on my Italian travel agenda: Rome. Number one in Rome: The Sistine Chapel.

After a lifetime of seeing pictures of those outstretched index fingers, I wanted to see the rest. Not a bad painting for a guy who thought he was a sculptor.What a delight to find a book that unveils all the religious, political and artistic mechanics behind one of the world’s greatest masterpieces. Michelangelo, to put it mildly, was a complex human being, and the book, Michelangelo and the Pope’s Ceiling captures the complexity of this genius along with the age in which he lived.  The book’s 384 pages may have more details about, say, the mixing of colors, than some readers can tolerate, but I loved every fussy, gossipy moment of it. I went to Rome fully prepared to see the Sistine Chapel with an educated eye, thanks to this addition to my travel library. And on the morning I had scheduled to go to the Vatican, I fell ill. Oh well, there is always next time. I hope.

And next time, I will expand beyond the Pope’s ceiling by reading A. K. Nickerson’s A Journey into  Michaelangelo’s Rome (2008), which was published after my last trip to Italy. See her video on You Tube.

Have you seen the Ceiling? What impressions did you carry away?

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