MICHELANGELO’S DAVID: WHERE IT IS AND WHO THE HERO REPRESENTED IS
Michelangelo’s David is one of the early works by the great Florentine artist, who was only 26 years old when he started working on it, but he was already famous for his unique talent.
The work was commissioned by the Opera di Santa Maria del Fiore in Florence in 1501, in order to place it along the roofline of the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore (Florence Cathedral).
Michelangelo’s David was a real challenge for the artist, who began working on a block of marble that other artists before him had tried to carve, but the block had a lot of problems because the material was fragile.
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Nonetheless, Michelangelo’s David was completed after only three years.
In 1504 David by Michelangelo Buonarroti was finished, but its size made impossible to place it on the buttress of the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore for which it was destined, and in order to solve the problem, a committee, which comprised the leading artists of that time (including Sandro Botticelli and Leonardo da Vinci), was established to decide on an appropriate site for the statue.
Eventually, the committee members decided to place Michelangelo’s David in front of the Palazzo Vecchio, where it remained until 1873.
Now the statue is displayed in the Galleria dell’Accademia di Firenze (or Gallery of the Academy of Florence), to protect it from weathering; whereas a copy stands in Piazza della Signoria.
At the end of the post you’ll find the link to book the entrance ticket to the Galleria dell’Accademia di Firenze to admire the statue.
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Who is Michelangelo’s David
Michelangelo’s David represents the Biblical hero, second king of Israel during the first half of the 10th century BC, while he is about to face the giant Goliath, who at that time frightened the Israelites, by challenging them to a duel.
In his right hand David holds a stone he will use to kill the giant.
David’s look is severe, and there are a lot of details which make this sculpture a real masterpiece: the vein going across the neck, the clearly visible tendons, and the tense muscles.
With Michelangelo’s David the artist modernizes the model of male beauty which draws inspirations from Greek and Roman classical sculpture, and since his first appearance this statue has been considered the most perfect work of the Renaissance.
When the statue was placed in Piazza della Signoria in front of the entrance of the Palazzo Vecchio, David was turned in southward direction, as an act of defiance to all the enemy people ready to attack Florence.
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Where can you admire Michelangelo’s David?
The original sculpture by Michelangelo Buonarroti is displayed in the Galleria dell’Accademia di Firenze.
The Accademia Gallery is located in the historic centre of Florence, in via Ricasoli, few steps away from the University.
If you arrive in Florence by plane, by train or by bus, the point of arrival is always the square of the central Santa Maria Novella railway station.
From here you can easily reach the Accademia Gallery on foot in about 15 minutes.
MICHELANGELO’S DAVID tickets
You must reserve a ticket for the Accademia Gallery. You’d better book your admission ticket to avoid the line at the ticket office and make the most of your time to visit it.
There are 2 ways to book your ticket:
1-online at the following web address: http://www.galleriaaccademiafirenze.beniculturali.it/galleria/ (the only official channel authorized for selling tickets online)
2-by calling Firenze Musei at the following phone number: (+39) 055294883.
Tickets price: full € 8; reduced € 4 (for European Union citizens aged between 18 and 25). Free admission for children under 12 years of age and for special free entry reserved to different visitors visit the official website. You’ll find the link at the end of the post.
Every first Sunday of the month the museum follows normal opening hours and the entry is free for everyone.
Opening times: from Tuesday to Sunday 8.15 am – 6.50 pm (closed on Mondays, January 1st, May 1st, and December 25th).
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