The #emptyvatican experience was inspired by #empty, a scheme where photographers are given access to famous museums and historical sites after-hours.
Organisers, travel journalist Erica Firpo and archaeologist Darius Arya, who have been holding ’empty’ events in Italian museums for the past year, got in touch with the Patrons of the Arts in the Vatican Museum asking to share a ‘less busy’ Vatican with the public.
The criteria for those chosen to take part was simple, they “had to be art lovers, interested in photography, and also really in love with Instagram,” Erica told the Herald.
“Our bottom line criteria is a kind unconditional love for Rome, Italy and its cultural heritage. That is what is the most important to us,” she added.
Here are a selection of the stunning photos taken.