Research paper on Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo

Michelangelo’s The Last Judgment evokes fear and panic in the audience in face of the last judgment, the last day when all Christians and non-Christians are supposed to undergo the divine judgment. The artist evokes divine fear in the audience and naturalism of his work increases the impact of the artist’s message on the audience. In such a way, Michelangelo reveals the full potential of his art and naturalism. Leonardo da Vinci The Last Supper The artist depicts the last supper of Jesus Christ. In contrast to Michelangelo’s The Last Judgment Jesus and his disciples are calm and feel no fear, although Jesus is aware of his fate. Leonardo da Vinci is also very concerned with realism of his painting but he attempts to convey the different message compared to Michelangelo. Leonardo da Vinci does not want to appall the audience. In contrast, he wants to show the obedience and readiness to self-sacrifice of Jesus Christ and his disciples. They are calm and steady, regardless of the awareness of the upcoming death of Jesus. Leonardo da Vinci tends to realism of his painting but, at the same time, his painting is quite symbolic. For instance, he depicted Jesus in the center of the table, while his disciples leaned aside from him as if the artist wanted to stress the role of Jesus as the teacher and great philosopher. In contrast to Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci did not want to appall the audience and provoke the fear in face of divine. Instead, Leonardo da Vinci evoked respect and readiness to self-sacrifice. The Last Supper is quite symbolic and has implicit meaning which may be deeper compared to The Last Judgment, where the artist depicted the day of the last judgment and evoked the fear in face of the divine. Michelangelo Sistine Chapel ceiling In fact, Michelangelo paid a lot of attention to religious themes in his works. In this regard, one of the most significant works of Michelangelo was the decoration of the Sistine Chapel ceiling. The Sistine Chapel ceiling represents the depiction of the creation, the downfall of man and the promise of salvation through the prophets and genealogy of Christ. In such a way, Michelangelo contrasts the divine nature of Christ and the downfall of man. Michelangelo attempts to distance a man and divine. This trend was quite strong in the past and Michelangelo maintains this trend in a way. However, his Jesus looks like human all the time and that makes him closer to people. Naturalism is present in this work again as it was present in many other works created by Michelangelo. At the same time, the artist feels a deep regret of the downfall of man but he depicts it not as a failure of God to create the perfect world but as a failure of a man because humans are weak. Nevertheless, Michelangelo depicts the downfall of man but he shows that people will never give up and they are ready to rise again, even after the deepest downfall. Therefore, whatever they experience, they still can stumble through and lead the normal life. In such a way, Michelangelo attempts to show the internal power of humans which may be hidden and which used to be underestimated in the medieval art. In the past, artists viewed humans as weak and defenseless and, therefore, incapable to resist to the power of God and divine plan but Michelangelo gave insight into the internal power of man.

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