laura stortoni-hager

Michelangelo’s paintings in the Sistine Chapel in the  Vatican are without a doubt the most celebrated paintings in Italy. The Sistine Chapel takes its name from the pope who consecrated it, Pope Sixtus IV, on August 15, 1493. But it …

I am referring to Leonardo da Vinci ’s portrait of Ginevra de’ Benci, his only painting to be found in the Western hemisphere. It is one of the greatest glories of the National Gallery in Washington D.C., and was purchased …

One cannot say that Rosalba Carriera was the best woman painter in Europe, since in the opinion of most art critics that merit belongs to Artemisia Gentileschi. But one can affirm without a doubt that Rosalba Carriera had the most …

Few churches have had a history of construction as long and laborious as the one of the cathedral of Milan, also called the Duomo. It was an impressive undertaking that for more than six centuries involved all of Lombardy and …

During a recent visit to the Museo Teatrale della Scala I admired many antique prints of commedia dell’arte situations. Commedia dell’arte was a theatrical genre that evolved in the latter part of the sixteenth century. It was a popular  reaction …

Before this year is over, we must talk about Mantua. Every year the Italian government chooses a city to be the Italian Capital of Culture, during which the designated town enjoys the spotlight and hosts various cultural events to celebrate …

Twenty-two years separate the painting of the vault and the painting of the mural entitled the Last Judgement in the Sistine Chapel. Michelangelo was in Rome in 1533, already working on the sculptures for the tomb of Julius II, when …

The Last Supper by Leonardo da Vinci is undoubtedly one of the most iconic, most famous works of art of all times. As such, it has always attracted crowds to the Refectory of the Dominican church of Santa Maria delle …

Imagine you have all the money in the world. Imagine you have all the space you want. Imagine you have the power to build anything you want, anywhere you want. No expenses, no permits, no regulations, except for your own …

The oddest-looking buildings in Italy are the arcane “trulli”, unique circular dry-stone buildings typical of the region of Puglia, the ancient Apulia. There is nothing like them anywhere in the world. They dot the valley of the Itria river in …