the pieta is the only work of art signed by its artist. who signed it
The structure is pyramidal, and the vertex coincides with Mary’s head. The statue widens progressively down the drapery of Mary’s dress, to the base, the rock of Golgotha. The figures are quite out of proportion, owing to the difficulty of depicting a fully-grown man cradled full-length in a woman’s lap. Much of Mary’s body is concealed by her monumental drapery, and the relationship of the figures appears quite natural. Michelangelo’s interpretation of the Pietà was far different from those previously created by other artists, as he sculpted a young and beautiful Mary rather than an older woman around 50 years of age. 
The Pietà (Italian: [pjeˈta] ; English: “The Pity” ; 1498–1499) is a work of Renaissance sculpture by Michelangelo Buonarroti, housed in St. Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City. It is the first of a number of works of the same theme by the artist. The statue was commissioned for the French Cardinal Jean de Bilhères, who was a representative in Rome. The sculpture, in Carrara marble, was made for the cardinal’s funeral monument, but was moved to its current location, the first chapel on the right as one enters the basilica, in the 18th century.  It is the only piece Michelangelo ever signed.
INTERESTING FACTS: MICHELANGELO’S SIGNATURE, A YOUTHFUL MARY, THE “TOOTH OF SIN”
Irritated, the cardinal sent Jacopo Galli, a Roman banker and nobleman, to discover the identity of the sculptor of the Cupid: Michelangelo was brought to Rome, where he apologised to Raffaele Riario and went on to sculpt the Bacchus for him.
Michelangelo carved a number of works in Florence during his time with the Medici, but in the 1490s he left Florence and briefly went to Venice, Bologna, and then to Rome, where he lived from 1496-1501. In 1497, a cardinal named Jean de Billheres commissioned Michelangelo to create a work of sculpture to go into a side chapel at Old St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. The resulting work – the Pieta – would be so successful that it helped launch Michelangelo’s career unlike any previous work he had done.
In her utter sadness and devastation, she seems resigned to what has happened, and becomes enveloped in graceful acceptance. Michelangelo’s talent in carving drapery is matched by his handling of the human forms in the Christ and the Virgin, both of whom retain a sweet tenderness despite the very tragic nature of this scene. This is, of course, the moment when the Virgin is confronted with the reality of the death of her son. In her utter sadness and devastation, she seems resigned to what has happened, and becomes enveloped in graceful acceptance. Christ, too, is depicted almost as if he is in a peaceful slumber, and not one who has been bloodied and bruised after hours of torture and suffering. In supporting Christ, the Virgin’s right hand does not come into direct contact with his flesh, but instead it is covered with a cloth which then touches Christ’s side. This signifies the sacredness of Christ’s body. Overall, these two figures are beautiful and idealized, despite their suffering. This reflects the High Renaissance belief in Neo-Platonic ideals in that beauty on earth reflected God’s beauty, so these beautiful figures were echoing the beauty of the divine.
When a work of art is damaged in this way, its exhibitors are forced to debate what’s best—leaving it as it is (like Cleveland’s The Thinker that was mangled in a bombing) or altering the original to restore it. The Vatican heard three arguments on this matter.
The Late Renaissance church houses the religious monument within the first chapel to the right of its entrance. There, countless Vatican City tourists have viewed it. You can visit it virtually here.
Michelangelo believed that the marble he used for this statue was perfect and the resulting artwork was no less. Although artists of varying locations such as Germany and France have already carved smaller statues of Mary and Jesus from wood, Michelangelo triumphed in artistic perfection by using an enormous marble piece for his creation. The statue still remains in St. Peter’s Basilica in Italy while reproductions of the piece are spread all over the world.
Several factors separate Michelangelo’s Pieta from others. With fine precision in draping and detail, Michelangelo’s Pieta depicts the Virgin Mary cradling her son after his crucifixion, except, unlike most artists, he decided to give Mary a youthful appearance to demonstrate her closeness to God as well as a reflection of her internal beauty. The statue has an immense lack of proportions that an average onlooker might not notice at first. Mary, although her body is mostly hidden by her draped clothing, is actually over 6 feet tall if the statue were to be standing. Her body is much larger than Jesus’ body, supposedly to better portray a grown man across a woman’s lap. Another interesting difference from Michelangelo and other artists is the fact that he gave Mary a restrained and calm look compared to one of grief and sorrow, which is more commonly depicted. In fact, both Mary and Jesus have a look of peace and acceptance on their faces.