The restoration of Michelangelo’s Pietà of the Museo dell’Opera del Duomo of Florence

The magnificent work returned to its maximum splendor

The restoration of Michelangelo’s Pietà (Bandini), which began in 2019 and ended in September 2021, has restored the intensity of the work, the third after the Vatican and the Rondanini, which depicts the mourning of Christ. The lifeless body is supported by Mary and Magdalene who express a dramatic gesture, but also human, in the pitiful act. The scene is dominated by the figure of Nicodemus with the likeness of the artist’s face. The marble group, a block of more than 2700 kilograms not without impurities of which the artist had often complained, came from the Medici quarries of Seravezza (Lucca). It was sculpted by Michelangelo between 1547 and 1555 and, after several vicissitudes, bought by Cosimo III dei Medici and transferred to Florence. The restoration, made possible by the contribution of the Foundation Friends of Florence and followed by the Superintendence APAB of the Metropolitan City of Florence and Pistoia and Prato, was conducted by Paola Rosa and Emanuela Peiretti. Deposits were removed from the surface, as well as traces of plaster due to a nineteenth-century cast and the subsequent wax polishing, restoring the original color and the sharp lines of the figures and the unfinished areas.

Ph. Courtesy Opera di Santa Maria del Fiore, Foto di Alena Fialová

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