After years of procrastination, I’ve finally read Michelangelo & the Pope’s Ceiling by Ross King. As the title indicates, this book is a history of the great Michelangelo and the painting of the Sistine Chapel in Rome during the early 1500’s. What I loved about this book is that not only does the author paint a picture of the task itself, but he also includes a fascinating history of the times. This informative book offers an enlightening view of the hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church during turbulent years in Italy when the country was a disconnected group of warring factions with many foreign invaders.
I read part of the book, and then listened to it in entirety on tape. The experience was wonderful and I enjoyed hearing the beautiful Italian words and names so much more than if I had read them
I learned a great deal about the history of my faith and gained a greater understanding of the art of fresco painting, and the monumental task accomplished by Michelangelo and his apprentices. Ironically, The Sistine Chapel was a commission Michelangelo was not inclined to take on. He viewed himself first and foremost as a sculpture. I can imagine what a great loss it would have been had he not been the one chosen for the job. I recommend this book to art lovers and historians whom I believe will love it as much as I did.