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A painting by a 12-13 year old Michelangelo

The Kimbell Art Museum in Texas is now home to the earlist known painting by the master Michelangelo.

The painting depicts demonic torment in terms of a siege upon St. Anthony by what appears to be a mob of Hades’ lesser fiends. Read between the lines, as it were, the painting also depicts Michelangelo in a crucial formative stage — learning as a youngster to copy an established master (the inspiration lies in a 15th-century German engraving by Martin Schongauer, The Temptation of Saint Anthony) while developing an originality of technique and attitude. The frenzy of the central image, framed by a craggy mountainside, takes place above an ironically placid rustic setting.

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