Universal Judgment' Story

Universal Judgment' Story

Michelangelo’s The last Judgment was a project commissioned by Pope Clement VII, who met Michelangelo in 1533.

The Pope manifested since the beginning the intention to see an universal judgment in the Sistine Chapel to go on to complete the grand scheme of decorations is pre-existing in the structure, so that even his name would be remembered in the list of supporters of the decoration of the famous chapel.

In 1534, while Michelangelo was still engaged in other important projects, he headed to Rome to begin officially to work in the Sistine Chapel the last judgment. In the same year, Pope Clement VII died, and Buonarroti thought that his work would be finished even before starting.

With the appointment of the new Pope Paul III, the project in the chapel was confirmed again, forcing Michelangelo to continue this complex work. Michelangelo was helped only by Francesco di Bernardino d ' Amadore from Casteldurante, also known as Urbino, rejecting categorically any other state aid and, thus, arriving to complete the work in 1541.

The extraordinary masterpiece of Michelangelo was loved and criticized even before its completion, for several reasons: it was revolutionary because, differently from the tradition, it was not only the circle of the blessed who had been to heaven, but also a large number of characters that engaged in combat and tangled, were swallowed in hell.

Originally, all the actors were completely naked, and this aspect has aroused not a few criticisms. In 1564 Daniele da Volterra, as the protests became more and more constant, was in charge of censoring every obscene element present in the picture of the last Judgment.

The intervention of censorship by Daniele da Volterra was not massive, especially because the latter was a great admirer of Michelangelo and didn't want to ruin the masterpiece of Michelangelo Buonarroti. These big changes, made after the death of Michelangelo, continued even after the departure of Daniele da Volterra, passing the baton in the hands of Girolamo da Fano and Domenico Carnevale.

Despite the showy covers, introduced in the fresco, the criticisms, however, continued to decline, and in 1825 was made a vast work of coverage that eliminated any remaining obscene item.

Finally, for some of the restoration work carried out in the Nineties, the last covers introduced in the more recent interventions were removed, leaving only those made in the sixteenth century visible.