La Fabbrica del Rinascimento. Processi creativi, mercato e produzione a Vicenza

The exhibition "La Fabbrica del Rinascimento. Processi creativi, mercato e produzione a Vicenza" was inaugurated on Friday 10 December 2021, in the presence of the Minister for Public Administration, Renato Brunetta.
Jacopo Bassano, Ritratto di due cani legati a un tronco, 1548-1550 ca., Musée du Louvre, Parigi

The exhibition "La Fabbrica del Rinascimento. Processi creativi, mercato e produzione a Vicenza" was inaugurated on Friday 10 December 2021, in the presence of the Minister for Public Administration, Renato Brunetta. A very important exhibition for the city, nominated for the Italian Capital of Culture in 2024, set up at the symbolic monument of Vicenza, the Palladian Basilica. An extraordinary location that for the occasion hosts real masterpieces, many of which unpublished, from prestigious museums such as the Louvre in Paris, the Prado in Madrid, the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna, the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge, the Birmingham collections Museums Trust, the Uffizi Galleries of Florence, the Vatican Museums, the Borghese Gallery.

The exhibition, curated by Guido Beltramini, Davide Gasparotto and Mattia Vinco, guides visitors through 80 works in 16th century Vicenza, investigating the production mechanisms and creative processes that lie behind the masterpieces.
During the press conference the curator Guido Beltramini underlined that “such an exhibition on the Renaissance has been seen few times because this time we propose to enter inside the paintings and understand the mechanisms with which they were created. Next to the finished works are the prints and books that the artists drew on, you will find the preparatory drawings, the sketches, the moments in which the idea comes out of the artist's head. "
In fact, along the exhibition path it is noted how the works are combined, for the first time, with their models of inspiration, with the drawings and sketches that "prefigured" them, with the reproductions of the same subject made by the artist. This is the case of the two "twin" paintings with the Adoration of the Magi by Jacopo Bassano, from the Birmingham Museums Trust collections and the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna, which for the first time are placed side by side. Similarly, the Judith with the head of Holofernes by Veronese, on loan from Palazzo Rosso in Genoa, is placed next to her sketch which is its inspiration, found at the Soumaya Museum in Mexico City and presented for the first time in Europe. . One of the most amazing drawings in the world by Parmigianino from the Tyler Museum in Haarlem, Holy Family with two saints, is put in dialogue with the painting by Veronese that is inspired by it, the Madonna and Child between Saints Catherine of Alexandria and Peter, from the collection of the Civic Museum of Palazzo Chiericati in Vicenza.

In addition to all this, the exhibition focuses on a curious aspect, linked to the economic value of the works. Thanks to a team of economic history specialists it was possible to compare the cost of living at that time to the value of the works.
In Vicenza in the 1500s there were prices in florins, ducats, thalers, gold ducats, and therefore, in order to have a very different unified price index, a measure corresponding to the value of a half-sized pig was used. at the time it cost 3 ducats.
Thus, next to the works of art of the second part of the exhibition there are small icons corresponding to how many pigs could be bought with the price of the work. Beltramini continues: "and here too you will be surprised, because for example Portrait of Two Dogs, exhibited today in the Louvre next to the Mona Lisa, was worth ¾ of a pig, and you will have proof of it because next to the painting there is the book of accounts of Jacopo Bassano" .

An exhibition of the highest cultural value that investigates various aspects of the Renaissance in depth and deserves to be visited by a large audience. Taking up the words of the Councilor for culture Simona Siotto: "This exhibition is about Vicenza, it is for Vicenza and certainly offers an image of an extraordinary Vicenza of the 16th century which still exists today. There are 3 words that characterize the Renaissance: courage, creativity and competence, values that characterize the Renaissance and that characterize this exhibition, the whole working group that is involved ". Finally, he concludes with the candidacy slogan of Vicenza Italian Capital of Culture 2024: “Culture is a beautiful invention”.

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