'The Pietà' by Michelangelo Buonarroti

The Pietà (1498–1499) is a masterpiece sculpture by Michelangelo Buonarroti, housed in St. Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City. The first time I viewed Michelangelo’s marble sculptures, I was awe struck by the beauty. Goose bumps formed all over me. His sculptures had a spiritual quality that God spoke to you through. Michelangelo’s skill at carving the hard marble was nothing short of brilliant. He made the marble come alive, transforming it into soft, supple, smooth skin and fluid drapery. It is said that he saw the sculpture in each piece of raw marble; he just needed to free it. The Pieta is one of Michelangelo’s most famous and loved sculptures. It is the only piece he signed, (MICHAELA[N]GELUS BONAROTUS FLORENTIN[US] FACIEBA[T], Michelangelo Buonarroti, Florentine, made this) on the sash running across Mary's chest.

The composition is the classic pyramid, from the top of Mary’s head widening at the base, which is the rock of Golgotha. Michelangelo depicts Mary as quite younger than her actual age. Jesus is peaceful after a brutal death on the cross. But the sculptor does not show signs of his death, but shows Jesus as the conqueror of death.

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