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Pieta Rondanini – Michelangelo’s Unfinished Statue or Work in Progress?

Pieta Rondanini is Michelangelo’s unfinished marble statue. Since 1952, Milan is a host to the master’s work. Today, you can find it at Museo Pieta Rondanini inside the Castello Sforzesco. When Michelangelo died in 1564, they found the sculpture at the artist’s workshop in Rome. Afterwards, the unfinished statue was missing for more than 200 years and reappeared in 1807 at Palazzo Rondanini.

And that’s how it gained its monicker: Pieta Rondanini.

Pieta Rondanini – Michelangelo’s Unfinished Statue

Nowadays, Pieta Rondanini is the one and only work of art inside this museum named after it.

Pieta Rondanini - Michelangelo's Unfinished Statue (Milan, Italy).

Pieta Rondanini – Michelangelo’s Unfinished Statue (Milan, Italy).

As you can see, Mary is standing, supporting his son, Jesus, after he was taken down from the cross. The famed Pieta inside St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican has Mary sitting while looking down at his son bathed in blood.

Pieta Rondanini - Michelangelo's Unfinished Statue (Milan, Italy).

Pieta Rondanini – Michelangelo’s Unfinished Statue (Milan, Italy).

It is Michelangelo’s last sculpture.

Pieta Rondanini - Michelangelo's Unfinished Statue (Milan, Italy).

Pieta Rondanini – Michelangelo’s Unfinished Statue (Milan, Italy).

The artist had been working on this sculpture for 10 years – and it’s still unfinished until he died.

Pieta Rondanini - Michelangelo's Unfinished Statue (Milan, Italy).

Pieta Rondanini – Michelangelo’s Unfinished Statue (Milan, Italy).

You can clearly see from this side view of the sculpture that its form is elongated and looks like the bodies are one.

Pieta Rondanini - Michelangelo's Unfinished Statue (Milan, Italy).

Pieta Rondanini – Michelangelo’s Unfinished Statue (Milan, Italy).

From its back view, nothing much to see here but shows a marble in rough cuts / lines. As you slowly circle around the statue, you’d agree to what many art enthusiasts say – that this piece is more like a work in progress rather than a work that is unfinished.

Pieta Rondanini - Michelangelo's Unfinished Statue (Milan, Italy).

Michelangelo’s Unfinished Statue (Milan, Italy).

Pieta Rondanini reminds visitors that it takes years to create a masterpiece that conveys not just style and form but real emotions we all could relate to. As you stand close in front of it and go around it, imagine how the aging Michelangelo, who was approaching death, worked his tools to perfect this piece. Though he wasn’t able to complete this work, he never failed to show us what art can do to our lives.

Where to Stay in Milan

I decided to stay at Hotel Ornato because there’s only a small difference compare to paying a bed in a hostel. I had nice room in this fabulous boutique hotel. It’s clean and the ambience is great! The staff are extra wonderful, too! The only thing that you might not like is that – it’s 30 minutes by tram to downtown Milan. If you don’t mind the commute, this hotel is perfect for you! Thirty minutes on the tram is a good way to get to know the city.

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