Today, Robert Mapplethorpe is recognized as firmly an artist of his time, whose work was richly steeped in the classical tradition. Even his most transgressive work borrowed heavily from the conventions of such masters as Michelangelo. Although separated by the centuries, each artist helped shape how we view the world. This book explores the connection from both academic and aesthetic perspectives. Serving as the exhibition catalogue for the show at Florence’s Galleria dell’Accademia, this volume illustrates one of Mapplethorpe’s favorite statements: like Michelangelo, he sought “the perfection in form” in all subjects, from nudes and portraits to flowers and architecture.