Loin-cloths in The Last Judgment

Years after Michelangelo’s death the Council of Trent ordered one of Michelangelo’s followers, Daniel da Volterra, to clothe parts of the figures of his Last Judgment fresco on the Sistine Chapel wall. Times had changed and those gigantic figures seemed indecently naked to the Counter-Reform Church authorities. So Volterra went about painting loin-cloths over all the objectionably-exposed portions of the swirling figures. And it must be said that he did the job very discreetly. He must have had to think long about each of the additions and to make many sketches. A lesser artist would easily have ruined the painting or made it ridiculous.

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