The Roots of Rembrandt

With a selection of portraits, mythological allegories and depictions, altogether some eighty works by Botticelli and his workshop, the exhibition Roma. Pittura di un Impero (Rome. The Painting of an Empire) the Scuderie del Quirinale in Rome presents the figurative representation of a crucial period in Roman history, from the 1st century BC to the 5th AD. Six centuries which saw the Roman Empire rise and develop, from the advent of Julius Caesar in 49 BC to the extraordinary consolidation of advanced power structures that could hold such a vast territory together. From landscape to still life, from stage design to popular painting, from the portrait to myth reinterpreted in accordance with the Roman tradition, the exhibition reveals all the themes of antique painting by means of great frescoes, refined portraits on wood, decorations, friezes and views of great vitality, recovered from both the patrician domus and the ordinary home or shop. Around 100 works of exceptional elegance and refinement, organised in five sections in such a way as to reconstruct the complexity of a figurative school from which development of modern pictorial genres derived, starting with Raphael to name only one example. They are all loan works from the world’s most important archaeological sites and museums. The value of the exhibition in fact lies also in the ‘revelation’ of magnificent and famous pieces by seeing them in the light of a wholly new interpretation.