"I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free."
Michelangelo was without doubt one of the most inspirational and talented artists in history. He lived and worked during the Renaissance and became one of the leading painters and sculptors of the time.
Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni was born in a small village near Florence in 1475. He had a hard childhood after losing his mother at age 6, and being raised by a strict, demanding father.
At age 13, he was an apprentice to a painter in Florence. At age 15, he studied under a sculptor. In the Medici household, Michelangelo net many leading artists, thinkers, and writers of the day.
Michelangelo's number one achievement was the ceiling painting of the Sistine chapel. It contains over 300 figures and takes up over 500 m² of the ceiling. He did it lying on his back. As of grand fresco, it took him four years to finish it.
In 1504, back in Florence, Michelangelo finished his second famous achievement, which was a sculpture of David. The statue is 17 feet tall and shows the moment David was about to battle Goliath.
At age 24 in Rome, Michelangelo carved his third famous achievement, his Pieta. It's a depiction of Jesus's mother, Mary, mourning over him, holding him on her lap). He selected the marble for his statue at the marble quarry. This relates to another one of his famous quotes, which is, "Every block of stone has a statue inside it and it is the task of the sculptor to discover it."
Michelangelo is viewed as a genius and as a true Renaissance man. His paintings and sculptures influenced all art that followed him. Visitors to his work are still awed today.