We went to Della Robbia exhibition!

Tiziana getting in the right mood for the exhibtion...

We made it. It’s always complicated to get organized with husbands and children to go to art events. They are not in the least interested but … Manuela and I have a secret weapon: GOOD FOOD!

We discovered a couple of years ago a nice wine bar in Arezzo, with excellent food, home made local dishes with fresh ingredient from the area. You know, ribollita, white beans, finocchiona, pecorino … Suddenly no one had any objection to a Sunday off and we met in Arezzo, under a cloudy sky, excited to see so many Della Robbia works in a single place.

There we are!!!

The Della Robbia exhibition was really well done and it came with a bonus: three rooms of the Museum host more than 300 pieces of Renaissance pottery from Valencia (Hispano-Moresque pottery),  Pesaro, Urbino, Casteldurante, Faenza, Gubbio, Deruta and Montelupo. An unexpected gift for us.

Madonna of the Apple: no picture will ever capture its beauty, alas.

Our favorite work was Luca Della Robbia’s Madonna of the Apple – Madonna della Mela. We stood a few minutes in front of this absolute masterpiece, admiring the amused expression of the child, his fattish thighs where the hand of the Holy Mary holding him appeared to sink.

I read that this maternal and affectionate attitude was not casual. It was indeed very popular in the Florentine sculptures of the 1520’s, when Ghiberti, Donatello and Michelozzo were competing to win timeless fame for the most human, “real” and therefore beautiful Madonna.

Well, without diminishing the works of our celebrated marble sculptors, we felt Luca fully succeeded in making a very simple and intimate portrait of Mary and Jesus. So much so in fact that we were overwhelmed by their humanity and sweetness.

Manuela and Tiziana don't bother about make-up. Should they? Maybe...We did expect more works by Luca della Robbia, though. The exhibition hosts only about 10 works by Luca. Although it was very interesting to see how his works relate with the ones of contemporary Florentine artists, we were hungry for more of his sculptures at the end of the tour.

Arezzo: the beautiful Loggia del Vasari in Piazza Grande.We made a point to go to Florence and visit the Museo del Bargello, where some of his works are hosted. I went there a few years ago and still vividly remember the visit with a deep emotion: I just could not pull myself away.
But we’ll have to find a good restaurant first… Luckily it’s never too difficult in Italy… even less in Florence.

One thought on “We went to Della Robbia exhibition!

  1. Hello! I just discovered your blog and I am really enjoying it. My Mother and I will be in Italy in October/November 2009. We both love Italian pottery and were hoping to visit s pottery studio or two. Any chance you could give me the names of a few good ones to visit? We’d like to see how the larger studios operate, but are also interested in smaller, family-run studios too. We’ll be in Florence, Rome, and further south during our vacation. Any information you could give me would be greatly appreceitated. Thank you very much!
    Trace Maiorno
    San Francisco, California

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