Buon Fresco Definition- Famous True Fresco Examples from Michelangelo and Other Artists

Buon fresco or true fresco was preferred by many ancient muralists for several reasons. The benefits offered by this wall painting technique have also allowed it to become a favorite among many contemporary artists. One of the modern artists who is known for his frescoes is Diego Rivera, who painted his murals on the walls of Mexico’s National Palace.

Diego Rivera- Retrato de Mujer

Buon Fresco Definition- Famous True Fresco Examples from Michelangelo and Other Artists

via Joaquin Martinez Rosado on Flickr
http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/6938086181/
Diego rivera, true fresco, painting, woman, mujer


What is the Buon Fresco Technique?

Buon fresco or true fresco involves mixing a pigment with water and applying it to a wet lime plaster. Both the paint and the surface it is applied to are wet. This makes buon fresco different from fresco secco.


True or Buon Fresco Example With Eolo Paul Bottaro


In fresco secco, or dry fresco, the lime plaster is usually dry and cannot react chemically with the paint that is applied to it. This means that in dry fresco, the paint and plaster do not fuse well.


Fresco Secco Example


The Renaissance period produced a large number of outstanding frescoes, produced by artists who are recognized as masters of their technique. Some of them worked very quickly and were able to accomplish a significant amount of work in a relatively short period of time.


More experience allowed muralists to move faster, since they were less likely to make mistakes that they would have to wait to correct. Unlike watercolor, oil or chalk, fresco could not be easily changed. Muralists who wanted to improve a section of their work would have to wait for that portion to set, then they could chip it away and begin fresh.

You can try fresco yourself and enjoy the beauty of these murals. Special brushes for fresco, mural and faux painting are a good choice.

“Excellent brush for oil and acrylic painting. I highly recommend this pounce brush for laying in backgrounds and other large areas”

“Very nicely made. Comfortable to hold and use. Leaves nice texture.”


Examples of the fresco wall painting technique can be seen in many different countries. Wall paintings in Pompeii that were done in the time of the Ancient Greeks still looked fresh when they were discovered in 1748. Murals done using fresco can also be found on the walls of caves in India.


Michelangelo and Raphael are two Renaissance artists who are known for their outstanding frescoes. Michelangelo is known worldwide for his work on the ceiling if the Sistine Chapel and Raphael, for his murals on the walls of the Vatican Palace.



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