Model for the facade of San Lorenzo

Michelangelo Buonarroti1518 circa

Casa Buonarroti

Casa Buonarroti
Firenze, Italy

In 1515, two years after he ascended the papal throne, Leo X, a member of the Medici family, decided to hold a competition to design a façade for San Lorenzo. It seems that at first Michelangelo was entrusted solely with the supervision of the sculptural decoration; in the fall 1516 Leo X gave responsibility for the architectural design of the façade to Michelangelo as well. The large wooden model in Casa Buonarroti, which itself reflects the passage from the design stage to that of execution.


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