How do you move a Michelangelo? Very Carefully.

I’m a fan of videos that show a famous painting being moved or under the working hands of restorers. We’re so used to seeing them hanging in a gallery, either “in person” or in photographs in Art History textbooks or web pages. The sight of these kinds of close encounters can be mesmerizing. I sometimes catch myself feeling a little envious of the technicians for having this kind of physical contact with one of civilization’s most iconic images. Once I unwittingly leaned a little too close to a painting for close inspection, and embarrassed myself by setting off an alarm.

Here, workers of the Uffizi Gallery  take down Michelangelo’s “Holy Family” from Room 25 to move it to more spacious and comfortable digs in the gallery. Since 1952 the painting has been displayed in room 25, quarters that have turned out to be rather cramped at times, a situation I recall was made worse by the presence of a busy doorway immediately to the left.

For more information about the move and other works in the new room, please see a fine article by bloggers Alexandra Korey and Hasan Niyazi


7 responses to “How do you move a Michelangelo? Very Carefully.

  1. I don’t know, but it looked crooked to me when they were finished. Thanks for the video. Very interesting.

  2. It’s enough to ponder a career move to picture restorer. The evidently superfluous mini-crowd gathering round simply to be there seem to agree. One odd thought: what’s wirh the hypermasculinity of the Uffizi? Don’t they employ women? I can spot precisely one in the vid.

    • Good question. I wish I knew more about the personnel practices of the Uffizi to answer that. I do know that the employees are represented by union. Thanks for dropping by.

    • Sorry for the late response. Interesting observation there. The last time I was in the Uffizi I saw a woman restorer working on the Bandinelli Loacoon with a laser cleaning device. My guess is that the guys horned in on the vid.

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