Michelangelo self-portrait said to be found in Vatican fresco
Can we call it the Michelangelo Code?
The Vatican announced this week that restorations of frescoes by Michelangelo show that the artist incorporated what is believed to be a portrait of himself in one of the murals. The discovery was made in the Vatican's Pauline Chapel, which is used by the Pope and isn't open to tourists.
A figure riding horseback in a blue turban in the upper left corner of Michelangelo's "The Crucifixion of St. Peter" is a self-portrait, according to the Vatican. The mural was created between 1542 and 1549, when the artist was in his 70s. The chief restorer, Maurizio De Luca, said that the self-portrait resembles portraits of the artist made by Giuliano Bugiardini and Daniele da Volterra.
The restorations began in 2004 and cost an estimated 3.2 million euros, or $4.5 million. The Pauline Chapel contains two important murals -- "The Crucifixion of St. Peter" and "The Conversion of St. Paul."
Pope Benedict XVI is scheduled to bless the restored frescoes in a ceremony on Saturday.
Click through for a detail of the Michelangelo fresco...