Natella Voiskounski

Magazine issue: 
#4 2021 (73)

The exhibition “The Medici: Portraits and Politics, 1512-1570” opened at New York’s Metropolitan Museum on June 26, 2021. A truly impressive range of artefacts drawn from the collections of the Met and from other European, North American and Australian museums, as well as private collections, has been brought together in one exhibition for the first time in the museum’s 150-year history. More than 90 genuine masterpieces created by the great artists of the Italian Renaissance - from Raphael, Jacopo Pontormo and Rosso Fiorentino to Benvenuto Cellini, Agnolo Bronzino and Francesco Salviati - give the impression of time turned back and allow us an incredible opportunity to indirectly make the acquaintance of various members of the Medici dynasty and the ruling elite of the era of Cosimo I de’ Medici. The exhibition is indeed “a sort of mirror of contemporary concerns,” as it is characterised by Carlo Falciani, the exhibition’s guest curator and professor of art history at the Accademia di Belle Arti in Florence. The age of Cosimo I de’ Medici is, without doubt, as Falciani emphasises, one of the most glorious periods in the history not only of Italian, but also of European art, so that an encounter with the masterpieces of the epoch is relevant as never before, as the subjects are, in essence, our contemporaries.


“It's time you knew: I'm also a contemporary...”
Osip Mandelstam

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