Prophet Daniel - Michelangelo Buonarroti. Fresco.
This mural is part of the murals of the Sistine Chapel, which the artist performed over the course of several years. This is a huge job, given the size of the ceiling, the abundance of figures and decorative elements, as well as the height at which the artist had to work while lying on his back.
Daniel - a young man endowed with the gift of foresight and prophecy, a famous character in the Bible. During the Babylonian captivity of the Jews, he found himself at the court of King Nebuchadnezzar. Here he miraculously gets beauty and health when he uses poisoned food from the ruler’s table. The impressed king calls on Daniel to interpret his dreams, as a result of which he becomes the main interpreter at court.
Daniel was thrown into a moat with lions, but wild animals did not touch him, so the prophet was freed. At the famous Balthasarov feast, he was able to read and explain the mysterious inscription on the wall that predicted the death of Babylon.
On the fresco the prophet is depicted as a beautiful, golden-haired youth of a powerful physique. He sits on marble steps, on his lap he has a huge tome in leather binding with clasps that supports a charming puffy putti. Daniel leaned to the side with the whole body, holding a book with one hand and writing something on the wooden music stand standing on the side. There are also writing accessories and a folded scroll of papyrus. Behind the back of the prophet one more putti is visible in a cloak, draped over his head and shoulders.
Daniel's clothing is multicolored, but sustained in delicate pastel colors with tints. The impressive folds are impressive, which perfectly emphasize the sculptural forms of the figure, making it voluminous, large-scale and very expressive. The prophet’s clothes show small gold clasps and even spectacular fringe adorning the edges of his robes. This mural, along with the rest of the chapel, is a true triumph of the artistic genius of Michelangelo.