Famous Artist To Know About: Facts About Michelangelo For Kids! | Kidadl

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Famous Artist To Know About: Facts About Michelangelo For Kids!

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Born in Italy in 1475, the full name of Michelangelo was Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni.

Michelangelo was considered to be the greatest artist alive and even decades after Michelangelo's death, he is still considered as one of the greatest artists ever. By the time Michelangelo died in 1564, the world had witnessed his greatness as an expert sculptor, painter, architect, and also as a poet.

Owing to his world renowned sculptures such as David, his works in the Sistine Chapel, and in the St Peter's Basilica, many people do not know that Michelangelo was an aptly talented poet. Throughout his lifetime, Michelangelo wrote around 300 poems of diverse taste and topics. Michelangelo lost his mother when he was six years old and was brought up by his nanny along with her husband and was educated at the University of Florence. Michelangelo's style of art was focused on Renaissance, especially High Renaissance and Italian Renaissance. He is considered a Renaissance man because of the way he blended realism with whimsical, as well as, his unique and intense style. Michelangelo had a unique talent of craftsmanship from a very young age but it was an act of forgery in 1496 which brought him into the limelight. In order to earn some quick money, Michelangelo forged a Roman sculpture known by the name of Sleeping Cupid. The critical part was to make it seem old and original and Michelangelo performed this perfectly by treating with acidic earth and burring it. He then sold it to Cardinal Raffaele Riario for a considerable amount of money, but soon Cardinal Raffaele Riario heard rumors of the piece being fake, and thus, got his money back. However, Michelangelo had impressed Cardinal with his skills and was invited to create art in Rome.

If you enjoyed this article, why not also read about facts about Pablo Picasso and facts about diamonds here on Kidadl?

What was Michelangelo's nickname?

Michelangelo was an Italian by birth and continued to make sculptures and other engaging art throughout his life in Italy. Michelangelo Buonarroti was loved and greatly appreciated by all of the people of Italy for his fine work, and was often called 'il divino' or 'the divine'. Once Michelangelo's talent came into limelight, thanks to the infamous act of forging the sculpture of the Sleeping Cupid, he did not look back and soon got his first big break.

Pietà was his first ever artwork of such great significance. To this day, it can be found in St Peter's Basilica in Vatican City. Interestingly, it is the only ever artwork which was signed by Michelangelo. The sculpture depicts Jesus Christ lying across Virgin Mary's arms and the Virgin Mother Mary mourning the death of Jesus. The young sculptor, Michelangelo, carved his signature across the chest of Mary in the sculpture out of rage when there were comments that Pietà was actually made by Cristoforo Solari, another Italian sculptor. The young artist had taken the decision to carve his signature out of rage and eventually regretted the decision, and later on in his life, never signed any of his art. Even though Michelangelo was a beloved man, he had a knack of making people angry with his ill temper and bad moods. Michelangelo Buonarroti had a habit of getting on people's nerves and testing their temper, and there was an incident where this habit of Michelangelo ultimately caused him some physical harm. It was Pietro Torrigiano, a peer of Michelangelo during his school days who once punched him in the nose because of this habit. The punch caused permanent damage to Michelangelo's nose and it was left crooked forever.

Why is Michelangelo's David so famous?

There are several reasons regarding why Michelangelo's David is considered as the definition of Renaissance and is famous all across the world. Michelangelo belongs to the High Renaissance movement and his art depicted the same. Ranging from the use of a single discarded block of marble to the anatomical detailing on the sculpture, David is considered as one of the best marble statues ever made. Additionally, the historical reference of David and the previous sculptures which existed also played a role in making Michelangelo's version of David so famous.

David is a well-known biblical figure whose sculptures had been previously made by artists such as Donatello and Caravaggio, but unlike Michelangelo, all other artists created sculptures of David portraying him as a young boy and capturing the moment where he defeated Goliath and then beheaded him. Contrary to his own previous works and that of others, Michelangelo sculpted David as a larger than life figure at a height of 17 ft (5.18 m) weighing around 6 ton (6000 kg) and portrayed David as a young man showing a determined look on his face just minutes before the battle, and did this entirely by himself. Although it is thought that he sculpted David all alone, some people think otherwise. It is known that Michelangelo used the techniques of Buon fresco and Fresco secco while making David. Moreover, the high detailed anatomy of David is the stand out feature of the sculpture. With a close look at the statue, one can find the detailing of the veins, as well as, other body features. One can get an idea of Michelangelo's excellence from the fact that he was only 26 years old when he started working on the statue of David but was already the highest paid artist. It took roughly three years for Michelangelo to carve out the statue of David from the disregarded piece of marble. Earlier artists had rejected to work on the marble piece owing to the excessive imperfections on it. The statue is currently located in Accademia Gallery in Florence Italy but is deteriorating faster than usual due to the marble's quality.

There are various replicas of David all around the world but none has come close to the one by Michelangelo.

Was Michelangelo left-handed?

The discussion over whether Michelangelo was left-handed or right-handed has been going on for many years. The contradicting evidence has elongated this discussion. The majority of the drawings of Michelangelo clearly depict that he drew with his right hand owing to the strokes going downward from the right to the left. However, in the autobiography of Raffaello da Montelupo it is stated that Michelangelo was actually a left-handed person who trained himself to become a right-handed man. Michelangelo hardly did any work with his left hand and did all the painting and sculpting with the right one.

Interestingly, Michelangelo wasn't the first choice for painting the Sistine Chapel. Raphael, a famous painter of the time, was preferred over Michelangelo but Raphael refused to accept the work and insisted Pope Julius II to employ Michelangelo with an evil plan that the young artist would succumb to the work at hand and Raphael would have to intervene midway, damaging the fame of Michelangelo. Even though Michelangelo considered himself as a better sculptor than painter, he very well completed painting the Sistine Chapel and is best known for it. Unfortunately for Raphael, convincing Pope Julius II to choose Michelangelo over himself backfired in the end. Interestingly, after the art work of Pietà, Michelangelo always found a way of leaving behind his mark on his art but not by his signature. Hence, the self portrait of Michelangelo can be seen in Last Judgement which covers the wall behind the altar of the Sistine Chapel. The portrait of Michelangelo can be seen on the portrait of St Bartholomew who was supposedly skinned alive and had been portrayed in the image with a flayed skin. During the making of Last Judgement, Pope Paul III along with Biagio Da Cesena, his Master of Ceremonies, visited the site and did not appreciate the nude figures. Later on, Biagio Da Cesena conveyed the same to the Pope in a letter. When Michelangelo heard of this, he drew Biagio in the portrait depicting him in the abyss or hell as Minos, a judge of the underworld with a body wrapped up in snake coil as revenge for the criticism.

Why did Michelangelo carve David?

The life journey and work journey of Michelangelo is filled with facts many people perhaps wouldn't be aware of. The reason behind Michelangelo carving David is also one of these facts. Michelangelo was not the first artist who was appointed to build the sculpture of David, the other two artists who worked on the marble piece before Michelangelo gave up saying the piece of marble had too many imperfections.

However, Michelangelo carved David out of that single piece of marble which hadn't been touched for the past 25 years. He said that the statue of David existed in whole within the slab, and it just needed to be brought out. The detailing on this statue of David is exquisite especially the anatomical detailing. As a fact, Michelangelo lived for 88 years and throughout this time period worked for nine different Catholic popes, ranging from Julius II to Pius IV. Another interesting fact about Michelangelo is that he became the first western artist at that time who had a biography published while he was live.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for Famous artist to know about: facts about Michelangelo for kids, then why not take a look at Finger monkey lifespan: New World monkey facts for kids! or Hinny vs mule: are they same or different? differences revealed?

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