A tiny room where Michelangelo hid from the wrath of the Medicis, long lost, and kept secret since its rediscovery, will be open to the public by 2020. The walls are covered with sketches he made during his two months in hiding.
The room is under the tomb room of the Medici chapels. In 1530, during a revolt in Florence, Michelangelo joined the opposition to the Medicis, even though he was working on commissions from them. With the collapse of the revolt, Michelangelo hid out for two months in the room.
When he emerged, he was permitted to resume his work and the charcoal and chalk sketches, along with calculations, were left behind and ultimately forgotten. In 1975, however, a museum director looking for a possible new exit for visitors, found the room, which had been used as a coal bin among other uses.
After the room was cleared of coal dust, mold and other contaminants, it was placed off limits except to scholars and occasional VIPs because of conservation concerns. But now, the directors of the Bargello Museum, which administers the chapels, plans to open it to visitors by 2020.