Milan’s Castello Sforzesco and the last work of a Dying Michelangelo?: I am IN!

Castle, castle, castle, castle, castle!!! image via wikipedia
Castle, castle, castle, castle, castle!!! image via wikipedia

Castles are the best. And Castles that have been turned into museums? EVEN BETTER. In Milan, there is the super duper cool Castello Sforzesco, a castle full to the gills with a ton of medieval and renaissance sculpture. AND a frescoed ceiling by Leonardo da Vinci (which you won’t have to wait in line for, like another, ahem, fresco by him in Milan, which shall remain nameless *cough Last Supper cough*). While Leonardo’s Sala delle Asse isn’t the subject of a Dan Brown novel (pity), it is awfully pretty. (Which is poorly represented by the photos here. I’m having issues with my photo library on my computer, so I’m relying on wikipedia images in this post. Joy)

This image is TERRIBLE (but you get  a sense of things): it's a ceiling painted like a canopy of trees (image via wikipedia commons)
This image is TERRIBLE (but you get a sense of things): it’s a ceiling painted like a canopy of trees (image via wikipedia commons)
So much better (image via wikipedia commons)
So much better (image via wikipedia commons)

So in addition to pretty Leonardo rooms there are a ton of sculptures including the bitching equestrian monument of Bernabò Visconti, which is awesome and looks like this:

Late medieval sculpture is the BEST (image via wikipedia)
Late medieval sculpture is the BEST (image via wikipedia)

And as cool as super stiff equestrian monuments are, they are not quite as cool as the sculpture that Michelangelo, who was wracked with religious fervor and also in his 80s, was working on when he died. I give you the Rondanini Pietà:

So good. sooooo goooooood. image via wikipedia
So good. sooooo goooooood. image via wikimedia commons

One of the classic examples of Michelangelo’s incomplete works, the Rondanini Pietà is perhaps the sculptor’s most moving example of this theme (there are three Michelangelo Pietàs– one each in Milan, Florence, and the extra-famous one in St. Peter’s in Rome), because it is so unfinished and demonstrates his process and how he was working out and changing how these figures should appear (that weird stump in the front? That’s an arm, a giant, giant arm). Love it.

And guess how many people you’ll be crammed in with when you’re looking at this Michelangelo???

Zero.

The Castello Sforzesco is the BEST.

The BEST (image also from wikimedia commons)
The BEST (image also from wikimedia commons)
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10 thoughts on “Milan’s Castello Sforzesco and the last work of a Dying Michelangelo?: I am IN!

  1. Thank you for your blogs of the wonderful places you are visiting. I appreciate your comments and explanations as well. It is unlikely that I will be able to visit many of these beautiful places so it is a pleasure visiting them with you. Safe travels.

  2. Now, that’s what I call a castle! As it happens, my wife and I were lucky enough to view The Last Supper in 2008 and we still regard it as one of the great experiences of our travels. La Scala was special too, in its own way

    1. I haven’t ever been to La Scala! I’m dying to go though. I’ve really only spent a few days in Milan (over a couple of different visits), so I really need to spend a bit more time there.

  3. the first Sunday of the month Castle (Milan’s) Museums are free entrance, but now Bernabò monument and Sala delle Asse are hidden by restoration works

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