New rooms opening, a valuable collection finally on view, compelling exhibitions, and, alas, a price increase: here’s what’s new at the Uffizi for 2018.
Let’s start with some not-so-good news: peak season ticket prices (March 1 through October 31) are now €20 (an increase of more than 50% since they previously cost €8). (If you travel in the low season - November 1 to February 28 - then the cost drops to €12.)
But hey, art is priceless, and the art contained in the Uffizi even more so.
And now there’s even more incredible art to see there, thanks to the opening of eight new rooms devoted to Caravaggio and 17th-century painting. Painted in a bright cinnabar red meant to evoke the fervor of that century, but also a color that was often used in fabrics and wallpapers depicted in paintings at the time, the rooms contain such Caravaggio masterpieces as La Medusa, Il Bacco and Il Sacrificio di Isacco, alongside works by Annibale Carracci, Guido Reni, Gherardo Delle Notti, Rembrandt, Rubens, Van Dyck, and Artemisia Gentileschi, in a confrontation between Florentine and Italian art with European art.
More welcome news comes with the recent opening to the general public of the Contini Bonacossi collection, whose new arrangement was financed by the nonprofit Friends of the Uffizi Gallery.
Count Alessandro Contini-Bonacossi was a politician and art dealer who donated his collection to the Italian state in 1969. For about 20 years, the collection was kept at the Palazzo Pitti, but it could only be visited by appointment. Then it was moved close to the Uffizi, on via Lambertesca, in a section that was part of the Uffizi complex, but mostly unavailable to the public.
So it is indeed great news that it’s now included with the regular Uffizi ticket, especially as it features masterpieces by Tuscan artists of the caliber of Cimabue, Agnolo Gaddi and Andrea del Castagno, as well as artwork by renowned European and Italian artists such as Francisco Goya and El Greco, Veronese, Tintoretto and Bernini. Gems like Giovanni Bellini’s San Girolamo nel deserto, Bernini’s marble sculpture of San Lorenzo and Veronese’s Ritratto di Giuseppe da Porto col figlio are now for everybody to enjoy.
Finally, among the many interesting exhibitions, don’t miss Painting and drawing like a great master: Elisabetta Sirani’s talents, with 33 works of art by the prolific female artist from Bologna (1638-1665) who died at 27. The exhibition is dedicated to the memory of Fiorentina soccer captain Davide Astori, who recently died at 31.
For more information and to book your ticket for the Uffizi, visit the Uffizi website.
If you need to book your train to Florence, check out the ItaliaRail website.