Postcard #8. Michelangelo’s Keyhole

Dave from Tugun made this request and this is one of the ones I love because without this project, I would never have known about the keyhole. Dave and his wife Jess were in Rome and ran out of time to visit the keyhole, which is why they asked me to visit it for them.

At the end of Via Santa Sabina is the “Piazza dei Cavalieri di Malta” (square of the Knights of Malta) at this square there is a large green gate with a fairly ordinary brass keyhole, and without the queues of people waiting to peer through it, you would never know there was anything special about it. Amazingly,when you peer through the keyhole, you get a perfectly framed view of the dome of St Peter’s Basilica. It’s quite mind-blowing how they managed to line it up so beautifully and I took some convincing it was actually St. Peters, because the view has a magnifying effect, but everyone assures me that is what I’m looking at.

I went with Janine, one of the other typography students and we were so blown away by the view we joined the back of the queue for another look. I’m glad I did because I got a much better photo the second time. The trick is to zoom, rather than jamming your camera lens up agains the keyhole, which most people tried. I love that there’s a bird flying in front of the dome in my photo. Thanks for this one Dave.


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