Michelangelo: Divine Draftsman and Designer

Michelangelo: Divine Draftsman and Designer

Michelangelo Buonarroti (1475–1564), a towering genius in the history of Western art, is the subject of this once-in-a-lifetime exhibition. On view in Gallery 899 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1000 Fifth Ave., NY, NY, beginning November 13, 2017 until February 12, 2018.

Michelangelo: Divine Draftsman and Designer

Portrait of Andrea Quaratesi, 1532, The British Museum, London


During his long life, Michelangelo was celebrated for the excellence of his disegno, the power of drawing and invention that provided the foundation for all the arts. For his mastery of drawing, design, sculpture, painting, and architecture, he was called Il Divino (“the divine one”) by his contemporaries. His powerful imagery and dazzling technical virtuosity transported viewers and imbued all of his works with a staggering force that continues to enthrall us today.

This exhibition presents a stunning range and number of works by the artist: 133 of his drawings, three of his marble sculptures, his earliest painting, his wood architectural model for a chapel vault, as well as a substantial body of complementary works by other artists for comparison and context.

Among the extraordinary international loans are the complete series of masterpiece drawings he created for his friend Tommaso de’ Cavalieri and a monumental cartoon for his last fresco in the Vatican Palace. Selected from 50 public and private collections in the United States and Europe, the exhibition examines Michelangelo’s rich legacy as a supreme draftsman and designer.

Michelangelo: Divine Draftsman and Designer

The Archers, from 1530-33, detail, Royal Trust Collection/Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II


To plan your visit or learn more, visit the museum’s website at:



Michelangelo: Divine Draftsman and Designer

Michelangelo: Divine Draftsman and Designer

Watch a video preview of the exhibition Michelangelo: Divine Draftsman and Designer, on view at The Met Fifth Avenue from November 13, 2017 through February 12, 2018.

Featuring Carmen Bambach, Curator, Department of Drawings and Prints, The Met,


Conserving Michelangelo

An engaging video detailing the conservation of a Michelangelo drawing on loan from Christ Church Picture Gallery, Oxford, in preparation for the exhibition Michelangelo: Divine Draftsman and Designer. The Met’s paper conservator Marjorie Shelley takes us through the complex and delicate process of restoring this beautiful architectural drawing.

Featured Artwork:

Michelangelo Buonarroti (Italian, 1475–1564 ). Designs for a monumental altar or facade, possibly for San Silvestro in Capite, Rome. Pen and brown ink, brush and brown wash, black chalk, stylus ruling, and compass construction (recto), black chalk, some ruling in black chalk (verso). By permission of the Governing Body of Christ Church, Oxford (0992; JBS 64)

Michelangelo: Divine Draftsman and Designer

Marjorie Shelley


Read the review by Holland Cotter for The New York Times, November 9, 2017,

Michelangelo Is the Divine Star of the Must-See Show of the Season

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