The ‘Florence At The Dawn Of The Renaissance: Painting And Illumination, 1300-1350’ exhibition at the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles opens on 13 November.
The show presents the most prominent Florentine artists of the era and features seven works by the Florentine master Giotto di Bondone – the largest grouping of paintings ever exhibited in North America. Other artists featured in the exhibition include Taddeo Gaddi, Pacino di Bonaguida, Bernardo Daddi, the Master of the Dominican Effigies and the Master of the Codex of St George. More than 90 works of art are on display, including paintings, illuminated manuscripts and stained glass.
Among the works on show is Giotto’s ‘Peruzzi Altarpiece’ (c. 1309-1315) commissioned by the Peruzzi banking family for their private chapel in Florence’s Basilica di Santa Croce (Basilica of the Holy Cross). The altarpiece depicts five monumental figures, including Saints Francis, John the Evangelist and John the Baptist, with an innovative level of attention to natural detail, from realistic facial features to an awareness of the body beneath heavy garments, creating figures notable for their profound dignity in posture and gaze.
In the first half of the 14th century, Florence witnessed rapid civic and church growth, the production of new literary and humanist texts, and the rise of the merchant class. The dynamic climate generated great demand for artistic production in the elaborate decoration of sacred and secular buildings, and in the many luxury copies of manuscripts created to meet the devotional and intellectual demands of the Florentine citizens.
‘Florence At The Dawn Of The Renaissance: Painting And Illumination, 1300-1350’ focuses on artists who worked as panel painters and manuscript illuminators, examining the two media side by side to offer a fresh look at the distinctive artistic community that gave rise to the Italian Renaissance. It presents new findings about artists’ techniques and workshop practices, based on conservation research and scientific analysis.
The exhibition runs until 10 February 2013 at the J. Paul Getty Museum, Getty Center. It then transfers to the Art Gallery of Ontario in Toronto, Canada where it will run from 16 March to 16 June.