Agnolo Bronzino (1503-1572), St Sebastian, ca. 1528/29, © Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, Madrid
Spanning the period from the return of the Medici to Florence in 1512 and the initial artistic endeavours of the new generation around Pontormo and Rosso to the 1568 publication of Vasari’s Lives (In Le Vite de più eccellenti architetti, et scultori italiani) the exhibition will be devoted to Florence as the first centre of European Mannerism.
More than 120 paintings,drawings and sculptures will provide an overview of a stylistically formative epoch (from 1512) for which the art historiographer Giorgio Vasari coined the colourful term “maniera” in 1568. Elegant, cultivated and artificial, but also capricious, extravagant and sometimes bizarre: Mannerism. One of the works in the Städel holdings – Bronzino’s famous Portrait of a Lady in Red (ca. 1533) – formed the point of departure for this ambitious show. The project is being carried out with special support from the museums of Florence, above all the Uffizi, the Galleria dell’Accademia and the Galleria Palatina. Further key loans will come from such prominent museums as the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles, the National Gallery of Art in Washington, the Paris Louvre, the Prado and the Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza in Madrid, the Staatsgalerie Stuttgart, the Szépművészeti Múzeum in Budapest and the Brera in Milan.
The art-historical development of the decades from 1512 to 1568 will be presented in close relation to Florentine city history and Medici rule – themes to be investigated in both the exhibition and the accompanying catalogue.