Magic from Matisse and Michelangelo

L: Matisse, Detail from Dance II (1910) Hermitage, Saint-Petersburg.
R: Michelango, Detail from Last Judgment (1534-41) Sistine Chapel, Vatican.

What does Matisse’s figure from Dance II (1910) have to do with Michelangelo’s St Peter from the Last Judgment (1534-41). More than you might think. Bear with me. Both are nude against a blue sky, facing us and facing left; both look a little hunch-backed. Matisse’s dances; Michelangelo’s appears to, his left foot hanging in the air. The hands across Matisse’s figure clearly refer to Michelangelo’s Creation of Adam, also in the Sistine Chapel. The kicker is that each torso contains a hidden self-portrait looking left, neither seen before EPPH revealed them. The moral of the story is: art history’s a mystery, not history.

These are the links for Matisse’s Dance II and for the 2011 post on Michelangelo’s self-portrait in St Peter. It is, in fact, the only true self-portrait as himself that Michelangelo is yet known to have painted.  

Reader Comments

i agree

kco
27 Jun 2014

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