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Vita di Michelangelo

L. Bardeschi Ciulich e P. Ragionieri

24,00 €

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edited by L. Bardeschi Ciulich and P. Ragionieri

exhibition catalogue: Florence, Casa Buonarroti, 18 July 2001-7 January 2002

publication year: 2001
paperback with flaps
245x290 mm, 160 pp.
231 colour and b&w illustrations

88-85957-76-5 Italian

The exhibition “Life of Michelangelo” (Florence, Casa Buonarroti, July 18, 2001-January 7, 2002) represents the last stage in an extensive research program initiated more than a decade ago by the scholars of Casa Buonarroti and based on the close scrutiny of a wealth of autograph documents.

Work-site journals and sketches by Michelangelo are displayed alongside the artist’s correspondence with Pietro Aretino and with his closest friends (notably Tommaso de’ Cavalieri and Vittoria Colonna), and the letters addressed to him by eminent patrons such as Caterina de’ Medici, at the time Queen of France, and Grand Duke Cosimo.
Following this chronological thread, the exhibition brings together a number of masterful efforts by Michelangelo, as well as works by contemporary artists. Among the former are a very fine Annunciation, usually kept at the Gabinetto Disegni e Stampe degli Uffizi and only seldom shown to the public, the famous Cleopatra sketches, and extraordinary architectural drawings such as the third project for the façade of San Lorenzo, the plan for San Giovanni dei Fiorentini in Rome and a sketch of Porta Pia, also in Rome; the latter include an Annunciation by Domenico Ghirlandaio, a precious manuscript illuminated by master-miniaturist Monte di Giovanni, a Venus and Cupid by Pontormo (after a lost drawing by Michelangelo), the portrait of Duke Alessandro by Giorgio Vasari from the Uffizi Gallery, and a portrait and two painted wooden tablets by Alessandro Allori.

These priceless works are accompanied, and commented upon, by a wide-ranging collection of interesting pieces, all inspired by Michelangelo’s work: varying in period, school and technique, these pieces – etchings, prints, engravings, small bronzes, medals, carvings (an excellent Fall of Phaethon from The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore, deserves special mention) – all attest to the lasting influence of Michelangelo’s masterpieces.

Introduced by a preface due to Casa Buonarroti’s Director Pina Ragionieri, and by a comprehensive essay on Michelangelo’s handwriting by Lucilla Bardeschi Ciulich, the catalogue is composed of 108 short essays devoted to the works on display, each of them complete with up-to-date bibliography. The volume also includes “Michelangelo. Vita e opere”, a detailed biography of the artist by Marcella Marongiu.