finish the review question

Reading Questions for Giorgio Vasari, “Michelangelo Buonarroti, 1475-1564,” in: Lives of the Artists (1550). George Bull, transl. Baltimore: Penguin Books, 1965, pp. 325-442, esp. pp. 349-62 on the painting of the Sistine Chapel

They are derived from pp. 325-363 of the reading selection. Vasari’s version of Michelangelo’s life and work on the Sistine Chapel does not necessarily mirror historical fact. It also does not necessarily coincide with the version of that life that you will see in the film, “The Agony and Ecstasy” (1965) (dir. Carol Reed) this Thursday so be careful to pay attention to how situations and individuals are characterized in the reading selection so that you can better understand the version of the story of Michelangelo’s work on the Sistine Chapel given in the film!

  1. At what age does Vasari start telling Michelangelo’s “life”?
  2. What Italian city did Michelangelo Buonarroti (1475-1564) come from, and who was his original patron / sponsor there?
  3. According to Vasari, how and why does Michelangelo try and make his drawings look old?
  4. Why, according to Vasari, did the young Michelangelo “flay dead bodies”?
  5. Which Pope chooses Michelangelo’s designs for his tomb?
  6. According to Vasari, why does Michelangelo “quarrel with the Pope” and leave Rome for Florence?
  7. According to Vasari, who engineers the Pope’s request that Michelangelo paint the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel and why?
  8. According to Vasari, did Michelangelo paint the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel alone or did he have help?
  9. According to Vasari, how far along is Michelangelo in the project when the Pope first “throws the Chapel open to the public” for all to see?
  10. According to Vasari, how long did it take to complete the Sistine Chapel painting?
  11. According to Vasari, how does Michelangelo have to position himself to work on the paintings of the Sistine Chapel?
  12. Read pp. 354-60 carefully and determine whether the scenes represented in the Sistine Chapel are derived from the Old Testament (Hebrew Scripture) or the New Testament.
  13. According to Vasari, are there only clothed or only nude figures depicted on the Sistine Chapel ceiling, or both?
  14. What is the final figure of the Sistine Chapel that Vasari describes?
  15. According to Vasari, what does the Pope give Michelangelo when the Sistine Chapel is finally finished?
  16. Why, according to Vasari, does Michelangelo not complete the tomb of Julius II?
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