Michelangelo and the Invention of Style

Online course

+44 (0)20 7942 2000

This online course is due to start within the next 48 hours (or it may already have begun!). To book, please call our Contact Centre on +44207 942 2000. While we will make every effort to get you into the course as soon as possible, we cannot guarantee that you will be enrolled in time to join the first day live. But don't worry: all our sessions are recorded, so you won’t miss out on any content.

This course will consider how the works and personality of Michelangelo Buonarroti led to a new understanding of the role of the artist in the 16th century through which they would be considered the equals of poets and philosophers.

  • Learn from our world-class experts wherever, whenever: watch lectures live or view the recording later in your own time.

  • Time to explore: 12 hours of lectures over six weeks.

  • Consolidate your learning: download lecture notes, copies of the presentations, and additional study materials from our secure Microsoft Teams learning environment.

  • Join the conversation: share your perspective with your fellow students, and support each other in your further enquiries outside of class time.

  • Learn at your own pace: lecture recordings and study materials are available for up to 12 weeks after the course ends, so you'll never miss a minute.

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course photo
Portrait of Course Leader Kevin Childs

Course Leader
Kevin Childs

Kevin Childs is a freelance writer and lecturer on culture and art history in the United Kingdom and Italy, where he leads specialised tours of Rome, Venice and Florence. He has been convening and contributing to courses at the V&A for nearly ten years and has taught on the Art History and Visual Culture BA course at Exeter University.

"Thank you, all, for a nourishing and inspiring series of classes. It is a privilege to participate in the V&A's offerings from afar." Previous V&A Academy Online Course Attendee

Course overview

The towering example of Michelangelo Buonarroti and his influence on the art of the 16th century is the subject of this course. Equally brilliant as painter, sculptor and architect, the very complexity of Michelangelo’s works along with his personal Terribilità were daunting prospects, but contemporary discourses around his art and personality would lead to a new understanding of personal style in art – what it is, why it is unique – and for the first time, artists were considered the equals of poets and philosophers. Michelangelo’s influence inspired some of the most exquisite and bizarre art of all time. From Madonnas with preternaturally long necks to the jewel-like painting of the Farnese Hours and the interactive wall art of Papal Rome, the strange modernity of la bella maniera, or beautiful style is still as striking today as it was when the painter and biographer Giorgio Vasari coined the phrase.


V&A Academy Online. A learning environment you can trust.

V&A Academy Online courses are built using the latest Microsoft software. Tune in to expert lectures live, or catch up later on demand. Download handouts and presentations. Join the discussion in a secure, closed class environment, wherever you are.

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Online course: Michelangelo and the Invention of Style

2 June 2023 - 7 July 2023


Call to book +44 (0)20 7942 2000

Need help enrolling? Talk to the admissions team:

+44 (0)20 7942 2000

Open 10.00 - 13.00, Monday to Sunday (closed 24-26 December)

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