Friday, March 17, 2023

Genius Will Out --- Day 12/79

Walk: Hood

Distance: 5.5 miles

Daniele da Volterra, Portrait of Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni, ca 1545

As is often the case with people of genius, Michelangelo had squirky ways.  He was often dissatisfied - with himself, others, life in general - and known for his critical, volatile moods.  He apparently lived in virtual squalor rarely changing his clothes or even bathing. It is even said that his clothes had been worn so long they had to be cut from his body when he died  This in spite of the fact that he died a rich man, with a fortune of at least $35 million U.S..

None of these habits or any other offensive ones he may have had bothered his public in the least.  Maybe because of his 'interesting' personality Italians adored Michelangelo, both during his lifetime and after.  He was known as "Il Divino" and everyone was hungry for colorful facts about him.  And it seems another of his quirks was that - even though quite reclusive - Michelangelo privately enjoyed his fame.  It is likely what led him to publish not just one but two full length autobiographies in his lifetime, to paint his opinionated self into the Sistine Chapel ceiling, and to meticulously record the many aspects - from insight into the work to timeline and pay - of the majority of his government and papal projects.

Overall, more is known about Michelangelo's thought, life and work than any other artist from his amazing Renaissance time.  And how great is that!!  Lucky posterity.  

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