The Secret Room of Michelangelo

Secret Room of Michelangelo remained hidden for centuries until it was discovered by chance in 1975. Beneath the Medici Chapels in the Basilica of San Lorenzo in Florence, a tiny room was found that is believed to have been Michelangelo’s hiding place for a short period in 1530.

In the room where he was seated, Michelangelo was armed with only chalk and charcoal, sketched figures from his previous and upcoming works, including The head of Laocoon and various revisions of David as some sketches taken from the Sistine Chapel, and even self-portraits.

Secret Room of Michelangelo

This room was undiscovered until 1975, when the director at the Medici Chapels Museum, Paolo dal Poggetto, discovered it by accident. The walls were plastered, but meticulous restoration work was able to bring Michelangelo’s charcoal drawings to light.

There is a report that the room, which was in the past only accessible to experts in art, could be made accessible to the public in 2020.

Secret Room of Michelangelo
Drawings believed to be by Michelangelo in the Secret Room of the Museum of the Medici Chapels in Florence

What is Michelangelo hiding? The Medici Chapels, currently an art museum, were once mausoleums, the burial site for those belonging to Medici beginning in the second quarter 1500s. In 1519, Michelangelo received the task of building the New Sacristy, which he had worked on for about ten years. It was to become one of his most important architectural works. At the time of his creation, Michelangelo was, therefore, a protector of the noblest family; however, when a popular revolt was launched to overthrow them, the artist joined with the Medici. But the Medici clan quickly returned to power, and Michelangelo had to leave.

Secret Room of Michelangelo
Drawings believed to be by Michelangelo in the Secret Room of the Museum of the Medici Chapels in Florence

He didn’t travel very far, but after working on it for a long period and he was familiar with the Medici Chapels as well as that of the San Lorenzo complex, and it was there that he found his refuge in a large and narrow basement that was under the same sacristy that which he built. It is what is now called Michelangelo’s secret room’, which will soon be available to visit. Keep an eye on the site for updates.

Secret Room of Michelangelo

The Secret Room of Michelangelo – Video

Here are some questions and answers about Michelangelo’s Secret Room

Who discovered the hidden room covered in charcoal and chalk drawings in Florence?

Paolo Dal Poggetto, the director of Florence’s Medici Chapels Museum, discovered the hidden room.

What was the original purpose of the hidden room before it was sealed in 1955?

The hidden room was initially used to store coal until it was sealed in 1955.

What convinced Paolo Dal Poggetto that Michelangelo was the artist behind the drawings in the room?

Paolo Dal Poggetto was convinced that Michelangelo was the artist behind the drawings because he believed Michelangelo sketched them while hiding from a death sentence in 1530.

How many visitors can descend into the hidden room at a time?

Four visitors will be allowed to descend into the hidden room.

Why will the hidden room be dark between visits?

The room will be dark between visits to protect the drawings from light exposure.

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