The Insider's Guide to: Renaissance Rome

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After an Imperial age of splendour, Rome went through centuries of decline. While the Renaissance took off in Florence, the Eternal City was nothing more than a provincial backwater in the fifteenth century. Successive popes tried to turn the tide by heavily investing in ambitious monuments, but it was Julius II, nicknamed the ‘Warrior Pope’, who successfully restored some of Rome’s former grandeur. Pope Julius commissioned the architect Bramante to rebuild St. Peter’s; he called Michelangelo to Rome to construct his magnanimous tomb and to paint the Sistine Ceiling and asked Raphael to decorate his private chambers. This lecture will shed light on how these and other artists gave shape to papal ambitions in Renaissance Rome.