Michelangelo’s Master Piece 'The Risen Christ' Comes To London

By Genevieve Gatia on Mar 15, 2017 12:27 PM EDT

Of all representation of Jesus Christ, Michelangelo's statue The Risen Christ is the only statue that depicts the son of God naked. The National Gallery in London will present the statue in their exhibition, Michelangelo and Sebastiano.

According to The Guardian, The Risen Christ stands in the church of Santa Maria sopra Minerva in Rome finished in 1521, when Michelangelo was 46. After the artist's death, the statue was given an odd baroque metal veil to cover the private parts that he'd carved.

Another version of the statue came from the San Vincenzo Monastery in Bassano Romano. Both versions of the statue will be exhibited at the National Gallery, the Minerva one in a plaster cast so that they can be studied side-by-side for the first time.

The Michelangelo and Sebastiano exhibition will open on March 15 where the statue will be presented in all of its nude glory. After the exhibit in London, the Romano statue is set to travel to Japan for other exhibitions.

According to The New York Times, the Risen Christ was commissioned in 1514 by Metello Vari, after finding a deep, black vein cutting through the left cheek Michelangelo abandoned the work, the statue. Michelangelo got a new marble and started to carved the statue that stands today in Rome.

Michelangelo gave the failed work to Vari and upon Vari's death in 1554, the statue fell into obscurity. His failed first attempt was lost but after 50 years, the statue was acquired by the Giustiniani family and another artist was commissioned to finish the statue.

In 1644, the statue was transferred to San Vincenzo Martire in Bassano Romano, where it remained on the main altar until 1979. At first, the statue was thought to be an imitation of Michelangelo but when documents emerged, the attribution to Michelangelo was confirmed in 1997.

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TagsThe Risen Christ, Jesus Christ, Michel Angelos, Son of God Naked, The National Gallery, London Gallery, Santa Maria Sopra Minerva

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