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


Founded: 1463
Category: Religious sites in Italy


4.5/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

justin wong (2 years ago)
Worth a visit and definitely need to buy tickets prior. The staffs were very kind, polite and helpful. We had no issue with way finding at all and really appreciated the whole experience we had there
Alexandra Yusufov (2 years ago)
Must absolutely book in advance. Tickets get sold out very quickly. I had to go with a tour group as the tickets were not available. Totally worth seeing even though there are only 2 paintings in the church
Julieta Ho (2 years ago)
It s a small but Beautiful church in which you will find The most famous work of DaVinci the Last Supper. To visit this small church is for free and not many people but a tons of people to visit the Last Supper make sure you get a ticket in advance and then visit the church. No private guide needed, it is a very short tour with time control on each visit, so don’t waste the money
Dino Numić (2 years ago)
Church where Leonardo painted the Last Supper. Entry to the church is free, however, to see the actual image you need to buy tickets for a museum that’s about 20m in front of the church. It’s almost impossible to buy them on the spot. Most of the times they are sold for the upcoming 30 days. Your best bet is booking yourself online and planning your visit in advance.
Eszter Barabas (2 years ago)
Make sure to book your Last Supper ticket many weeks in advance. When I planned my visit they were all sold out and I had to book an expensive 3 hour walking tour just to see it. It was still worth it and the walking tour was interesting, but if you just want to see the Last Supper, you get to do that for a much lower price if you are on time!
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