Santa Maria delle Grazie

Milan, Italy

Santa Maria delle grazie ('Holy Mary of Grace') is a church and Dominican convent in Milan, included in the UNESCO World Heritage sites list. The church contains the mural of The Last Supper by Leonardo da Vinci, which is in the refectory of the convent.

The refectory of the Convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie in Milan forms an integral part of this architectural complex, begun in 1463 and reworked at the end of the 15th century by Bramante. On the north wall is The Last Supper, the unrivalled masterpiece painted between 1495 and 1497 by Leonardo da Vinci, whose work was to herald a new era in the history of art. The complex, including the Church and Convent, was built from 1463 onwards by Guiniforte Solari, and was afterwards considerably modified at the end of 15th century by Bramante, one of the masters of the Renaissance. Bramante structurally enlarged the church and added large semi-circular apses, a wonderful drum-shaped dome surrounded by columns, and a spectacular cloister and refectory.

The Last Supper

The painting was commissioned in 1495 and completed in 1497. The representation by Leonardo da Vinci depicted the moment immediately after Christ said, “One of you will betray me”. Leonardo rejected the classical interpretation of the composition and had Jesus in the midst of the Apostles; he also created four groups of three figures on either side of Christ. The 12 Apostles reacted in differing ways; their movements and expressions are magnificently captured in Leonardo's work. The genius of the artist is seen especially in the use of light and strong perspective. Unfortunately, Leonardo did not work in fresco but in tempera on a two-layered surface of plaster that did not absorb paint. It was as early as 1568 when Vasari first pointed out problems with this painting technique.

The Last Supper, which Leonardo da Vinci painted in the refectory of the Dominican convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie, is undisputedly one of the world’s masterpieces of painting. Its unique value, which over the centuries has had immense influence in the field of figurative art, is inseparable from the architectural complex in which it was created.

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Address

Corso Magenta 68, Milan, Italy
See all sites in Milan

Details

Founded: 1463
Category: Religious sites in Italy

Rating

4.5/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Colin Wilkins (17 months ago)
This is where Leonardo painted The Last Supper and those who are privileged to view this fresco will never forget the experience. Tickets are limited so book well ahead to avoid disapointment. The work has deteriorated over the years since 1494 and restoration has taken place so how long we have this masterpiece no one knows. Highly recommended
Tjaraka Hana Channel (18 months ago)
Experiencing Leonardo's Last Super is sublime. The church is beautiful inside. The bonus was we are allowed to take pictures no flash. This is part of Milan experiences not to be missed.
Ketsia Cordova (18 months ago)
To look at the last supper painting you need to buy tickets for a specific time. We went in to purchase the tickets at 1230 and were told that it was closed and would open again at 1530. We come back at 1530 only to be told that the next available reservation was at 2015. Neither one of the workers that told us it was momentarily closing bothered to explain this to us, they just wanted us out of the ticket office.
Devon Abblitt (19 months ago)
This was the highlight of my day in Milan. We visited Santa Maria delle Grazie as part of a walking tour. It is really amazing to get and spend time so close to history. The fresco is housed in what use to be the dining room of this monastery. There is an airlock that you walk through on both entering and exiting the room with the last supper. You can take as many pictures as you like, but only without the flash. If you have a camera that can take good pictures in low light it would be best to bring that for your visit. The fresco has so much detail in person and is really amazing to see.
carlos borges (19 months ago)
Don't get discouraged if you didn't order your ticket in advance. We were able to get our tickets via Get Your Guide on the same day as our visit. The tour through the Sistine take about 15 minutes per group so they are able to handle hundreds of tourist a day.
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