There are few tourist attractions in the world as compelling and in-demand as Michelangelo’s iconic artwork in The Vatican. According to a recent report, more than 25,000 visitors flock to the Roman chapel daily to stare in awe at the frescoes that decorate the interior — most notably, the mind-blowing ceiling that was painted by Michelangelo between 1508 and 1512.
Yes, it is an experience being in the Sistine Chapel. (A year ago, a New Yorker article declared it can be too much of an experience, with shouting guards moving crowds along for “a fifteen-minute neck-craning exercise in mostly futile inspection.”) However, if you’ve ever wanted to visit the chapel, but didn’t have the means to go to Italy, the chapel’s most striking, immortal visions will be on full view right there in H-Town.
Starting on June 8, “Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel: The Exhibition” will be unveiled for a two-month run at event space The Corinthian. Needless to say, the artwork won’t be the genuine article. Expect full-sized, photographed replicas of the artist’s vault frescoes, along with his 40-foot-high The Last Judgment, from the altar wall.
This exhibit is certain to hip many art neophytes to Italy’s High Renaissance period, as well as one of its most major players. But, more importantly, it will also give people the chance to take their time and view these pieces up close, to catch every nook and cranny of the imagery, the style, the intensity and, of course, the artistry enclosed in these paintings. You won’t need to be quiet, stick with your crowd and risk a sore neck in order to take in these beauties.
“Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel: The Exhibition” may not be the real thing, but it’s as close to the real thing as stateside people will get. Consider this your chance to take in a piece of art history without angry guards barking orders at you, in air-conditioned serenity.