5 THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT SISTINE CHAPEL
Sistine Chapel, the main chapel in the Palace of the Vatican, is named after the Pope Sixtus IV, who commissioned its creation.
The Chapel was decorated with frescoes by the most important 15th- century and 16th- century artist, including Michelangelo, Perugino, and Botticelli.
5 things to know about Sistine Chapel.
Sistine Chapel is decorated with a series of 12 paintings on the side walls, depicting Biblical scenes from the Life of Moses on the left wall, and scenes from the Life of Christ on the right one.
The symbols and the meanings of these frescoes are connected to the painting opposite to them, but at the same time the paintings contain many references to Roman buildings and Roman architecture.
READ ALSO: Free museums in Rome.
The vault (or ceiling) and the wall above the altar were decorated by Michelangelo Buonarroti, and are considered his masterpiece (and also a masterpiece of history of art).
Pope Paul III Farnese commissioned the wall of Sistine Chapel to Michelangelo. In order to paint it, former frescoes had to be erased and two windows behind the altar had to be closed.
Michelangelo painted the Last Judgement and it took him 7 years to finish it.
The Pope himself chose the subject of the frescoes: he wanted to remind the Catholics that their faith was absolutely necessary during the difficult period of the Protestant Reformation.
READ ALSO: What to see inside the Vatican Museums.
Pope Julius II commissioned the vault to Michelangelo.
The subjects are God’s creation of Mankind and Mankind’s Fall from God’s Grace.
The whole composition is crowded with more than 300 figures. In the middle of the scene there are scenes from the Genesis and around theme scenes from the Bible and the representation of sibyls, who would prophesy the birth of Christ.
Sistine Chapel is the site of the Papal conclave, the process by which a new Pope is selected, and other official ceremonies.
There’s another Sistine Chapel in Rome, located in the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore, built by Sixtus V.
READ ALSO: Visiting the Vatican Museums.