A new work from Michelangelo has been discovered
- The Seated Man, is a large drawing drawn in pen, with a style that proves it is the work of a young Michelangelo
- The drawn man is wearing a toga, while sitting on a decorated throne and holding a large sceptre
- Sir Timothy Clifford, leading scholar of Italian Renaissance, said it is 'very likely' a work by Michelangelo
- What do 12-year olds get up to these days (besides playing Fortnite?) Not much.
In comparison, by the age of 12 Michaelangelo - who was still learning the ropes as an artist - was creating stunning works of art. The just-found new piece of art - thought to be the artist’s earliest drawing - makes us feel even more inadequate.
Thankfully this newly emerged work dubbed The Seated Man, won’t give you a sore neck in the same way that frescoes in the Vatican do. The Seated Man is a 220mmx153mm drawing done entirely in pen, and in two shades of brown ink.
It’s pretty unbelievable to think any 12-year-old is capable of such a piece, but Michelangelo seems like a safe bet. According to Sir Timothy Clifford, the proof it’s Michelangelo himself is in the drawing method, ‘...with rounded chins and a very hard line under the nose, which also appears in a slightly later drawing. No other Ghirlandaio pupil draws like that. It's an extraordinarily interesting object because Michelangelo's very young indeed.'
What really sparked interest with people about this discovery is how it can possibly exist. The artist was known for burning the work he saw no need for. How did this one survive?
Clifford explains that, ‘Just before his death, [Michelangelo] burned a large number of his own drawings, sketches and cartoons to prevent anyone from seeing the labours he endured or the ways he tested his genius, for fear that he might seem less than perfect.'
The artwork is owned by an anonymous British collector who nabbed it on the sly in 1989, at a French auction house.