The YouTuber Débora Aladim drew attention on Twitter by posting parts of Michelangelo’s work at the Sistine Chapel and writing on the caption: “I simply love that Michelangelo has left some hidden gay kisses in the Vatican and no one will ever be able to erase it since it is a world heritage site”.
After her comment reached 40 thousand likes and 6 thousand retweets, she deactivated her Twitter profile due to the criticisms, considering that the artist was aligned to the Catholic Church‘s stance at the time, and that the displayed couple could be among the condemned souls during the Final Judgment.
The website Correio Braziliense came into contact with the art professor and PhD in History from the Goiás Federal University, Vanessa Clemente Cardoso, who said that this is a tough question to answer: “We can’t talk about the artist’s intention since Michelangelo didn’t leave any writings about, he didn’t document the work’s meanings – she explained.
“There is much talk, for example, about Michelangelo trying to confront the church, putting the man as the Center of Creation, and Adam, another fresco in the Sistine Chapel, through the drawing of a brain (that appears in the painting’s background). However, other authors, more famous and well-known, believe that it was only a reflection of the great passion the painter had about the study of anatomy, which was being recovered in the Renaissance”, she exemplified.
Vanessa explains that Renaissance artists were Christians, but weren’t always completely in agreement with the Vatican’s moral alignment.
Still according to the Correio Braziliense’s article, the historical documents don’t allow us to assert the true intentions of painters of the past. However, there are paintings depicting homosexuals inside the Vatican and this was commercially exploited by the Italian company “Quiiky” in 2014, that created a route called “the untold story”.
The company’s then chief executive, Alessandro Virgili, gave an interview to The New York Times talking about the painting mentioned by the YouTuber.
“For example, we are talking about Michelangelo. He was a devout Catholic and, at the same time, a homosexual, with a constant feeling of guilt and internal conflicts reflected in his works. When we look at Sistine Chapel’s “Final Judgment”, our tour guides don’t forget to show the two male figures at the upper right corner who are kissing to celebrate their ascension into heaven”, he declared.