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«S|R, Studi e Restauri». La Luce di Maria

Il restauro delle vetrate con l’Assunzione di Maria e quattro personaggi biblici di Lorenzo Ghiberti nella cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore

Alessandro Becattini, Francesca Cecchi, Silvia Ciappi

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Issue n. 6

Series directed by Francesco Gurrieri and Bruno Santi

Edited by Alessandro Becattini, Francesca Cecchi, Silvia Ciappi

June 2015

Paperback
16 x 24 cm, 72 pp.
isbn 978-88-7461-272-7 Italian

The stained-glass of Santa Maria del Fiore that opens into the ogee-arched windows of the naves and the three circular windows of the 19th century façade were a somewhat overlooked subject by scholars, even though their number – 44 in total – characterized the Florentine cathedral as a sacred building for its conservation of one of the stained-glass art complexes of Italy. It is also important to note the notoriety of the artists who were commissioned the cartone (detailed drawings drawn to scale) of the stained-glass windows: Lorenzo Ghiberti, Donatello, Paolo Uccello, Andrea del Castagno.

The maintenance and the necessary restoration of this vast window complex are one of the ongoing activities entrusted to the Opera di Santa Maria del Fiore, which has taken advantage of the most specialized professionals of working artefacts in the city. The Assumption of Mary painted in 1404-1405 by Lorenzo Ghiberti is the focus of this issue. Ghiberti, a true jack-of-all-trades who was active in goldsmithing, sculpture, and even painting, demonstrates that the unity of the arts in the Florentine botteghe (artist workshops) represented an undeniable professional standard.

Also presented is a stained-glass window in the cathedral’s “Tribune of the Cross” that depicts the Patriarchs Joram, Joshua, Eliezer and Her, which have been restored to their best conservation and visual conditions. This was a later execution by the fruitful and multifaceted Ghibertine workshop, presumably dated between 1443 and 1444. To adequately illustrate this enterprise contributions by Silvia Ciappi, who has meticulously and effectively elaborated on the theological meaning and the historical-critical characteristics of the windows; by Francesca Cecchi, who researched the relevant documents in the Opera’s abundant archives; by Alessandro Becattini, who attentively illustrated the restoration, entrusting to the public a complete review from both a symbolic and technical standpoint.