Italy Art Facts

The Pieta sculpture by Michelangelo Buonarroti
The Pieta by Michelangelo


When you think of the great works of art produced by Italian artist what comes to mind might be Michelangelo's amazing sculpture of David or Leonardo da Vinci's incredible painting, Mona Lisa. Indeed, they are two of the greatest works of art ever created but there are many others, perhaps less well known, stunning works of art produced in Italy. On this page is a list of 5 of Italy's greatest works of art with interesting information and facts about each. These short descriptions include where these amazing works of art are located, when they were created, and who created them. Below that is a list of 10 additional works of art produced by great Italian artist. This information is written for kids and adults alike.

5 of Italy's Greatest Works of Art

Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa

This painting is widely regarded as the greatest painting ever produced. The great Renaissance artist Leonardo da Vinci painted the Mona Lisa in the early 1500s, probably between 1503 and 1506 with some modifications after this period. The Mona Lisa is widely believed to be a portrait of Lisa del Giocondo, who was a member of the influential Gherardini family of Tuscany. Why is the painting called Mona Lisa? It is named after Lisa del Giocondo preceded by "Mona" which translates basically to Madam (or My Lady). It is on display in Paris, at the Louvre Museum.

The Sistine Chapel

The Sistine Chapel located in Vatican City (technically not Italy) contains numerous works of art by several artists but is most famous for the ceiling painted by Michelangelo. Michelangelo painted the ceiling between 1508 and 1512. The ceiling features 9 scenes from the bible's Book of Genesis; the most famous being God and Adam touching hands.

Michelangelo's David

Carved out of marble by Michelangelo Buonarroti between 1501 and 1504, the statue of David is perhaps the most famous sculpture in the world. This Masterpiece depicts the naked Biblical hero David right before his famous battle with the giant Goliath. So remarkable is this work of art that the veins in David's hand and arm are visible as he clutches the rock he will use to kill Goliath. The statue stands 17 feet (5.17 meters) high and is on display at the Galleria dell'Accademia in Florence Italy.

Michelangelo's Pieta

Carved by the famous Renaissance sculpture Michelangelo Buonarroti between 1498 and 1499 the Pieta (English translation "The Pity") is one of the greatest sculptures ever created. This amazing work of art depicts the lifeless body of Jesus laying on the lap of mother Mary after his crucifixion. The statue is on display at Saint Peter's Basilica in Vatican City. The statue has been restored after being damaged with a hammer in 1972 by a mentally ill man.

The Last Supper by Leonardo da Vinci

This famous wall mural, painting by Leonardo da Vinci, is in Milan at the Convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie. Leonardo da Vinci began the painting in 1495 and finished it in 1498. The murals dimensions are 180 inches by 350 inches (460 by 880 centimeters). The mural depicts Jesus at the last supper with his 12 disciples at the moment he declared that one of them would betray him. Unfortunately, due to environmental factors along with some intentional damage, the mural is in bad shape; but still worth seeing.

List of 10 Additional Famous Works of Art of Italy