It’s unusual for a museum to have too many works to exhibit. That delightful fortune happened to the Uffizi Museum in Florence after the end of the Medici, Electress Anna Maria, resolved that the whole family compilation would go to the gallery in 1743. The consequences, assembled over quite a few centuries, were that one of the premium treasure troves of art anyplace on earth arrived there.
The Uffizi sits in a structure planned as workplace for the Grand Duke Cosimo I (1519-1574). ‘Uffizi’ in Italian means ‘office’. Vasari, finished the gallery itself in 1581 from a blueprint under the protection of Cosimo’s son, Francisco. Slowly but surely, the Medici relocated additional works here, creating the world’s foremost open art museum in 1591.
Countless art museums begin with a small, for a while exceptional, compilation of personally composed works. Here, maintaining their lives as always the Medici – leaders of Florence for their age group – sent them to the Uffizi by the carload.
Works are on hand in sequential order, giving guests the chance to observe the entire panoply of Renaissance art in the way it evolved. That show forms not only a teaching but an incident of a generation.
Amid the works at this point are the well-known Venus by Botticelli. Master canvas Ognissanti Madonna by Gothic master, Giotto, is on exhibit in this Florence museum. Lippi sets it aside for display alongside The Madonna and Child together with Two Angels. There, are countless additional canvases with Raphael’s Madonna of the Goldfinch, which is located not far from the Bacchus by Caravaggio.
One wall holds the Venus of Urbino by Titian. In another display, the Baptism of the Christ by del Verrocchio sits near Michelangelo’s Doni Tondo which is a minor works in this outstanding compilation. Da Vinci’s Annunciation is only steps away through a passage way. The famous Mannerist oil, The Madonna of the Long Neck by Parmigianino hangs in the Uffizi.
Wonderful as that segment of the compilation is, there is a great deal extra to the Uffizi than Italian Renaissance art. Rembrandt’s an Old Man is there. The Adoration of the Magi by Drer is on exhibit. El Greco, Goya and Velasquez are on show.
Many later works are on display too, including over 250 self-portraits one of which is of Chagall, he gave his canvas to the Uffizi curator face-to-face. Canvases by Ingres, Delacroix and Rubens may be viewed in the slender hallways. The art museum contains some 1,400 miniatures, which numbers next only to the similar compilation in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.
The Uffizi stands as one of Florence’s most well-liked and appealing gallery’s. In a center filled with exceptional art, both inside and out, that is rather a triumph. When so many exceptional artists are symbolized in one compilation, guests will be shown more than can be seen in one afternoon. To view the Uffizi Gallery collection, and actually see it all will take some planning. During the summer it can take quite a few hours to get into the gallery if you don’t have a reservation. It is a good idea for that reason, to book far enough in advance to avoid disappointment.