FLORENCE, ITALY – This year, the rooms on the main floor of the Galleria degli Uffizi (06-19-2012 – 11-04-2012) is hosting an important exhibition that intends to reconstruct the panorama of Florentine art in the wonderful and crucial period that extended roughly from 1375 to 1440 .
In order to render the cultured and precious climate of this long season, this show will present paintings that have been famous for centuries, alongside other exquisite paintings little known to the general public, along with sculpture in wood and marble, illuminated codices, works of sacred and profane art: all of them creations of superlative value and undisputed historical importance which come from prestigious public museum institutions, as well as from Italian and foreign private collections.
The exhibition itinerary will follow a chronological order and begin from works by the greatest interpreters of the final phase of the fourteenth-century tradition. These artists include Agnolo Gaddi, Spinello Aretino, Antonio Veneziano, Gherardo Starnina and Lorenzo Monaco. Following the death of Starnina, Monaco was left the greatest Florentine painter to propose his own very personal version of the late gothic style. One that was extraneous even to the refined naturalism of Gentile da Fabriano, whose work in those years was steeped in lyricism, and who also features in the exhibition with paintings that are famous for their moving beauty.
We will see works by artists active in Florence between the XIV and XV centuries who were driven by a cultural mindset that looked back to the late fourteenth-century artistic tradition and, at the same time, showed interest for the sensational novelties of the new Humanist doctrine with the fervid recovery of antiquity that it suggested. These works will represent the highest level of painters worthy of a more diffused familiarity: Lippo d’Andrea, Mariotto di Cristofano, Giovanni Toscani, Ventura di Moro, Francesco d’Antonio and Arcangelo di Cola.
At the same time, we shall also experience the poetic virtues of Lorenzo Ghiberti, one of the most illustrious personalities of the Florentine late gothic style. His worksite at the first gate of the Baptistery, during the early phase of his activity, was indeed the school for all of the leading artists active in Florence.
We shall then have the opportunity to observe the gentle manner of Beato Angelico, an artist who along with Michelozzo was emblematic of a line of expression that aspired to conjugate the artistic language of the recent past with the novelties that were taking shape in the city with Brunelleschi and Masaccio. Their line of expression had the comfort of several great humanists who orbited around the figure of Cosimo the Elder de’ Medici.
Finally, the exhibition closes in splendour with one of the most illustrious works of the early XV century that has been restored to an unsuspected readability: the Battle of San Romano by Paolo Uccello, a work of art that synthesises the dreams of an unrepeatable epoch.