Do you want to know what the 9 frescoes on the ceiling of the sistine chapel represent?

The ceiling of the Sistine Chapel is one of the most impressive works of art of all time.

In the Sistine Chapel worked some of the great artists of the Renaissance, but the frescoes of Michelangelo Buonarroti are undoubtedly the most famous.

The work, commissioned by Pope Julius II, was carried out between 1508 and 1512. A record time if we consider its extension, the complexity of the pictorial program and the technique used. The technique of “fresco” painting requires enormous skill and ability in organizing the artist’s work.

Michelangelo’s paintings reveal his genius and technical skills. His well-known preference for sculpture is also evident. Powerful human figures with defined anatomical details are the evidence of this.

What do the ceiling paintings of the Sistine Chapel represent?

The most well known and repeatedly replicated panel is the one that represents the Creation of Adam.

Capela Sistina_Creation_of_Adam

 

This is only one of the 9 central panels that represent scenes from the Book of Genesis and are organized as follows.

Capela Sistina doc Sistine_Chapel_Ceiling_-_Português

 

Looking at these 9 center panels, from left to right.

The first 3 represent Noah.

  • The Drunkenness of Noah ( Génesis 9,20-27).
  • The Flood (Génesis 6,5-8,20)
  • The Sacrifice of Noah (Génesis 8,15-20)

The 3 in the center represent the creation and perdition of Adam and Eve.

  • Original Sin and Banishment from the Garden of Eden (Génesis 3,1-13)
  • Creation of Eve (Génesis 2,18-25)
  • Creation of Adam (Génesis 1,26-27)

The 3 panels on the right side represent Creation.

  • Separation of Land from Sea ( Génesis 1,9-10)
  • Creation of the sun, moon and planets (Génesis 1,11-19)
  • Separation of Light from Darkness ( Génesis 1,1-5)

 

See how Michelangelo painted this scenes on the Sistine Chapel Ceiling.

You can find out more about the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel on Musei  Vaticani

Online courses about art history

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