Pieta Michelangelo 1501 Artwork

Freshman (College 1st year) ・Art ・MLA


Pieta used to be created between 1497 and 1500 by famend artist Michelangelo Buonerriti even before he was 25 years old. The piece of art portrays Jesus in the hand of Mary whilst sitting on the rock of Golgotha after the crucifixion. Pieta is currently housed in St. Peter’s Basilica at Vatican City. The sculpture is mainly made of marbles and measures 174 by 195 centimeters.

Material and Creation

The Pieta statue is a 5-foot 8-inch sculpture that is carved from a single block of marble stone. The essential reason why the artist selected this material is that it can be chiseled, chipped, it is smooth, strong, and can be polished into a clean piece of art. Primarily, Michelangelo argued that the piece of Carrara marble that he used to work on Pieta was the finest and perfect block he ever used. To create this piece of art Michelangelo used several methods that included painting an outline, sketched and models made of marble blocks, and the water approach. The author possessed a photographic memory that enabled him to have an excellent sense of judging and enlarging by the eye alone. Michelangelo started carving the Pieta from one side as if he was doing a life figure rather than a round one. Primarily, the artist would finish one-half on statue before even starting on the other side.

Marble Carving

Marble carving is the primary medium used by Michelangelo in his work. This is one of the oldest forms of creation of three-dimensional forms. Even before painting started, carving of shapes from the stone was already in existence. Importantly, there are records in history stating that art of carving sculpture and statutes existed even in the ancient times. The evolution of this has enabled the author to master the art, and the results are clear with masterpiece statutes such as the Pieta. Anything that is curved from marble stone holds unique styles crafted and pattern depicting excellent quality. Ancient sculptors in Rome and Greece employed marble in sculptures as relief carvings. Moreover, some of the earlier Roman and Greek pieces of art such as statute Kouros during the archaic period proceeded the classical era. Additionally, the use of marble carving reached its pinnacle of excellence during the classical period of Greco-Roman.


Michelangelo was successful in creating his Pieta. The piece of art strongly designed the bodily form and facial expression of Jesus and Mary to focus the sculpture on the triumph of Christ atonement. This turned away the sorrows of his death to focus mainly on important issues. Moreover, the artist chose not to show Jesus with a face of pain but rather decided to give him a calm face. Similarly, the author gave Mary an expression that was devoid of passion. The calm face indicated that the woman had accepted the death of Jesus. Importantly, the artistic choice draws the focus from the death of Jesus and concentrates on the good news that he triumphed over sin.

Other Uses of Marble

Furthermore, marble could be used in different application such as construction, agricultural lime, Bust Artemis, marble stairs, treads, risers, and floor tiles. This material can be used in interior design and prestigious architecture. Marble has a component that is used to treat agricultural soil to reduce acidity.

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