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The Sistine Chapel

Price: $22,000.00



Quote by Robert Simon, Art Historian and Art Dealer, who discovered Leonardo da Vinci’s lost masterpiece Salvator Mundi in 2005 and first exhibited it in 2011:

Now more than ever, when travel is limited and the immense amount of digital imagery fatigues the eye, these magnificent volumes can serve as a tonic for the soul. Whether seen as a triumph of photography, a monument of scholarship, or a luxurious asset, this is a work to covet and, for the fortunate, to own.

This extraordinary three-volume set on the Sistine Chapel is the result of a five-year collaboration between Callaway, the Vatican Museums, and the Italian art publisher Scripta Maneant of Bologna, Italy.

Employing ultra-high-resolution digital photography of every centimeter of the Sistine Chapel, along with the finest Italian bookmaking, it is also the culmination of Callaway’s 40 years of publishing the world’s finest art books.

This giant, 24x17 inch, 822-page magnum opus features state-of-the-art color accuracy and printing fidelity, color-matched against the actual frescoes, to produce a 1:1 life-scale rendition of masterworks by Michelangelo, Botticelli, Perugino, and other Renaissance artists as the world has never seen them.

This monumental project dovetails with the ongoing conservation program of the Vatican Museums, who have never authorized a publication of this kind. It creates a state-of-the-art permanent archive through the most advance digital technology. The worldwide publication is limited to 1,999 copies, with only 600 available in the English language for the world. The work will never be reprinted. A portion of proceeds from sales is given to the Vatican Museums.

The publication of The Sistine Chapel trilogy is a pioneering technological breakthrough. To create the ultimate book of these masterpieces, a team of photographers made more than 270,000 digital images over the course of 67 consecutive nights, while the Sistine Chapel was closed to the public. Using a 33-foot-tall scaffold and rig to capture every inch of the chapel in gigapixel digital photography, the team utilized imaging software to stitch together seamlessly all 270,000 individual frames. The Sistine Chapel can be experienced through the pages with a precision, color, detail, and proximity not possible to see in person. The result is the first opportunity in history for viewers to appreciate the frescoes as Michelangelo and the other artists painted them, with images so clear, sharp, and immersive that the viewers feel as if they are side by side with the artist. We can observe in extreme close-up the artists’ precise colors and textures down to individual brush strokes.

The words of Antonio Paolucci, former Director of the Vatican Museums, guide the reader on the journey through the Sistine Chapel: the iconography and stories behind the masterpieces; heretofore-unseen details; the subtly nuanced palette; the energy of brushstrokes applied in the race against time that is inherent in the fresco painting technique; and the mesmerizing expression in the eyes and gestures of the figures portrayed. Readers are left with an indelible experience of overwhelming grandeur.

The Sistine Chapel is an art treasure for the ages, to acquire or to give as the heirloom of a lifetime.

Publication Date: November 1, 2020
ISBN: 9780935112917

Price: $22,000, inclusive of shipping and handling, plus tax
Each set will be expedited via air courier to the final destination in a bespoke, reusable, locked shipping case that perfectly safeguards the ensemble in transit and in storage



  • Page count: 822 total pages for the three volumes

  • Trim size of each volume: 24 x 17 inches (portrait)

  • Weight: 25 lbs. for each volume; 75 lbs. total

  • Gigapixel photography color-matched against the original frescoes with 99.4% accuracy

  • Printed and bound in Italy in six-color offset lithography, including 220, 24 x 51-inch gatefolds

  • Printed on Fedrigoni Symbol Tatami paper

  • Each signature is hand-gathered and each volume is hand-bound in three-piece Bodoniana sewn binding in silk printed with metallic ink. The spines in white calf leather from matched hides are debossed in silver, gold and platinum foil stamping

  • Typographic design by Jerry Kelly

  • Debossed handmade Italian endpapers featuring Cosmati mosaic tile floor patterns in the Sistine Chapel

  • Each volume is protected in a custom cotton sleeve and a pair of white cotton gloves is provided for archival handling

  • Bespoke handmade gift box for each volume and for the boxed ensemble, printed in white and silver ink with matte film lamination with recloseable fasteners

  • Custom-designed viewing stand and cabinet available upon special order