Saturday, November 24, 2012

Bardiglio and the Michelangelo Quarries

This is a Maquette for the next piece I intend to carve. 
Today I organised the cutting of a large block of Bardiglio marble which I shall use. 

 Bardiglio is a grey marble and the piece probably came from the Cappella quarry above Seravezza. 

In 1518 Michelangelo took his marble for San Lorenzo in Florence from these quarries at Cappella. He was also responsible for  building  the road down the valley to  Seravazza  from where it was transported to the coast, shipped to Pisa, then  put on barges and floated down the |Arno to Florence.
I recently read his letters and came away with the impression that he was great “whinger” according to him nobody ever did what he wanted and they were all out to cheat and rob him. He complained that the Pietrasantese took his money but didn’t do the work promised. He wrote  to the Pope asking to return to Florence as he hated staying  in Ruosina, a dark little town at  the bottom of the steep valley, where he said  it rained all the time and that the wine was foul.

The grey Bardiglio is quite a popular stone among sculptors working in the area, being a nice alternative to  the Carrara marbles that are common here.

Jacques Lipchitz used when he was here

And recently  Julia Vance a very good Norwegian sculptor, working at Studio Sem in Pietrasanta  used it for this piece.

I hope to get started sometime next week.


  1. Hope it doesn't upend the Ape this time!

  2. Thank you for providing this great post. This collection looks great and it makes any interior look fancy and modern.
    michelangelo marble

  3. Luck you to be in Pietrasanta!
    I bought a pice of Bardiglio there and now pulling my hair out (again) trying to get the color even on the finished piece. Any recommendations?