Thursday, 19 February 2015

"Prince of Dreams" Exhibition

Yesterday I got see a recent exhibition held at the Quirinale palace, the residence of the President of the Italian Republic, dedicated to the 20 tapestries commissioned by Cosimo I de' Medici to decorate Palazzo Vecchio in Florence.
I must say that I was really excited to enter the Quirinale, as it's usually not open to the public.

--I even had the chance to cross paths with some Corazzieri! How charming--

*cough*

The exhibition is a must see, as it's the first time that the collection of tapestries, officially known as "The Stories of Joseph the Jew", was gathered as a whole after 150 years-- In fact, half of them was collected into the Quirinale for want of the Savoia in 1882, as the other half was kept at Palazzo Vecchio, their original location.
Another important detail is that, thanks to the mediation of the President, the exhibition is ticket free and free to access.
As pictures were forbidden in the area, I'm sharing here some shots taken from an article of the website of the Corriere, where you can see further pictures of its inauguration.
For larger pictures of each tapestry, descriptions and details, you can check the page of the Quirinale's website dedicated to the exhibition.

The artworks for the tapestries were commissioned to some of the most representative artists of the Italian Mannerism, Bronzino, Pontormo and Salviati.
The wall-hangings were executed by the Flemish masters Jan van der Roost and Nicolas Karcher, members of the Arazzeria Medicea , which was apparently founded in 1546 just to take care of this huge cycle.
The protagonist of the cycle is the patriarch Joseph (not the father of Jesus!) and the story of his life, from youth to death, following his rise from slave to governor of Egypt.
The idea of Cosimo's choice was to produce a huge allegory for the Medici dynasty, as the vicissitudes of Joseph are meant to mirror the alternating fortunes of the great Florentine family.
The exhibition will be held in Rome 'til April 12, 2015.
From April 29 to August 23 will be in Milan and finally it will reach Florence from September 15 to February 15, exacly located in that Sala dei Duecento of Palazzo Vecchio, which was its original location.

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