MICHELANGELO Buonarroti
(b. 1475, Caprese, d. 1564, Roma)

Pius

1501-04
Marble, height 134 cm
Duomo, Siena

The garment of a prince of the Church in full dress cannot be dramatized in the same way as that of an apostle. Michelangelo divided up the task in Siena as a medieval master would have done: he kept the apostles in the lower register for himself; he left the popes in the register above that to Baccio da Montelupo because they are artistically less interesting and are not seen at quite such close range. Pius was particularly sacred to the Piccolomini, because in the person of Enea Silvio, who chose the name Pius II (1458-1464), they had provided their first pope. He founded the town of Pienza.