Michelangelo Buonarroti 1475 – 1564

The Conversion of Saul

fresco (625 × 661 cm) — 1542-45 Museum Cappella Paolina, Vatican City

Michelangelo Buonarroti biography

This work is linked to Acts 9:4

Tags: Paul

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This is the first of two large frescoes Michelangelo made in Paul's Chapel (Cappella Paolina) in the Vatican. The other one shows The Crucifixion of Peter. The chapel was built as a private chapel for pope Paul III. The frescoes were painted opposite each other on the long walls of the chapel.

Michelangelo started working on this fresco in 1542. The depiction of the figures in the sky shows strong resemblance to his previous project: The Last Judgement in the Sistine Chapel, which he finished in 1541.

The fresco shows the moment that Saul, a fanatical persecutor of christians, is hit by a divine beam of light, which leaves him lying on the ground, blinded. A voice tells him to continue his journey to Damascus. There a christian called Ananias makes him see again. Now named Paul, he joins the apostles.

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