While art museums around the world are shut due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there is no reason we can’t still have an appreciation for good art. The greatest in the European world of art, economics, culture, and intellectual achievement was the Italian Renaissance, Florentine artist, Michelangelo Buonarotti. The ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, in Vatican City, Rome is filled with paintings by Michelangelo depicting legends of deities. For hundreds of years, people have looked up at those remarkably true to life masterpieces. As people’s minds are dazzled by the incredible artworks, they may ask, “Why did Michelangelo spend his life creating this timeless masterpiece? What was he trying to tell people?”
For so many years, people, regardless of social classes, have all had to raise their heads up to see the magnificent masterpiece by this great master.
Every stroke of his brush carried his respect and love for heaven. It emphasizes a pure mind, a holy life, devoid of worldly attachments. Based on his belief in God, Michelangelo painted the sacred solemnity of the Kingdom of Heaven. He painted humans being rewarded for doing good and the punishment for those who do evil. He changed the dull walls of the chapel into a bright place of reverence for future generations.
Michaelangelo spent his whole life in unparalleled hardship and loneliness. Because of his faith, his works reveal a miracle in all respects. It helped him achieve this brilliant level of art. His belief pushed his creativity toward its’s highest form thus earning him the respect of generations.
Many figures on the ceiling are almost nude, but these images do not cause impure or lewd thoughts in the minds of the people who view them. Michelangelo himself, never married. He put all his energy into art. His pure mindset during the course of his painting rendered the images of his characters a purity like that of a newborn baby.
Upon viewing these huge paintings, besides being touched by their solemnity, people’s minds will naturally feel pure. Such is the purpose of the work and the magical effects great art is supposed to have on people.
Why did he paint on the ceiling?
The answer seems to be that righteous belief exceeds all secular affairs. Perhaps because of these reasons, a ceiling is the most suitable place for depicting heaven. People should forever have hope and reverence for heaven.
Why did he choose a religious theme for his masterpiece?
From the artist’s work, one sees that he demonstrated his belief through the painting. It was the most important thing in his life. From Genesis to the Last Judgment, the viewer’s hearts are deeply moved time and time again as if one is stripped layer by layer from bad factors. Sometimes, If one looks close it seems as though the characters are real. The expressions in their eyes and their presence are as though they are alive.
Sometimes people’s attitudes towards religious or spiritual teachings are unclear, distorted or even lacking, Michelangelo did his best to express his belief through his paintings of the stories in the Bible.
When people hate, kill or slander those of faith, no matter, if he is the Pope, a priest, or whoever, the verdict against them, will be guilty in the Final Judgment.
Of Michaelangelo’s painting, some gods and divine angels might have said, “Let Michelangelo record these godly events since it will be needed in the future, to help people understand the culture needed for the human race to continue and help prevent the loss of all the great art in the world. If humans do not follow a good way, everything would have been in vain.”
Therefore with the consent of the gods and angels, and with their blessing, Michelangelo completed his most magnificent works.
Those who have seen these paintings and artworks should cherish the opportunity, as everything depicted in them is genuine and true.