Art Buzz September 15, 2013: Reassured about Syria, Italy loans Israel Botticelli’s The Annunciation of San Martino alla Scala



Reassured about Syria, Italy loans Israel a Botticelli work

Botticelli's 'Annunciation'

Botticelli’s ‘Annunciation.’ Photo by Bloomberg

Italy’s culture ministry had declined to send the 15th-century “The Annunciation of San Martino alla Scala” to the Israel Museum due to geopolitical and logistical considerations….READ MORE

Art Buzz May 24, 2013: New European Paintings Galleries, 1250-1800, at the Metropolitan Museum of Fine Art



New European Paintings Galleries, 1250-1800, at the Met

Source: NYT, 5-24-13

Suzanne DeChillo/The New York Times

Italian Baroque works in the Metropolitan Museum’s European paintings galleries, which have expanded by nearly a third and undergone a reinstallation.

When a monument wakes up, you notice. It’s been more than 40 years since the Metropolitan Museum of Art rethought what many considered its raison d’être, its galleries of European paintings….READ MORE

 A Fresh Home for Familiar Paintings

Source: NYT, 5-24-13

Photos from the new European galleries at the Metropolitan Museum of Art….READ MORE

Art Buzz May 5, 2013: Burst of Light: Caravaggio and His Legacy Exhibition at the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art in Hartford



Caravaggio, and Some of His Admirers

Source: NYT, 5-5-13

An exhibition featuring the works of the great artist and 21 “Caravaggisti” is on view through June 16 at the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art in Hartford….READ MORE

Burst of Light: Caravaggio and His Legacy

March 6 – June 16, 2013

Art Buzz April 13, 2012: ‘Offering of the Angels: Treasures from the Uffizi Gallery,’ Florence, Italy Exhibition at Michener Art Museum in Doylestown



Angelic host of paintings from Italy bound for Doylestown display

Source:, 4-13-12
uffizi gallery

Ufizi gallery art at the Michener Museum

Bruce Katsiff, director of the Michener Art Museum in Doylestown, is pleased to be bringing a Botticelli to Bucks County with “Offering of the Angels,” a selection of paintings and tapestries from the Uffizi Gallery in Florence, Italy. (Emma Lee/for NewsWorks)

The Italians are coming to Doylestown.

Masterworks of the Italian Renaissance will be on view the Michener Museum in Doylestown for a limited run.

Forty-two paintings from the Uffizi Gallery in Florence — a museum with one of the largest and finest collections of Renaissance art in the world — have been culled for a traveling show. The James A. Michener Museum is one of four institutions in America to host the show, beginning April 21.

All the paintings in “Offering of the Angels: Treasures from the Uffizi,” as well as two tapestries and an illuminated manuscript, are from the 14th through 17th centuries. They depict events in the life of Jesus Christ.

“The association between art and the religious was very much the dominant relationship,” said Michener director Bruce Katsiff. “It’s only in the 18th, 19th, 20th centuries that there’s been a division between artists and religion. So much of art has been about service to religion.”

Just two years ago, the Michener Museum expanded its gallery space to handle large, traveling shows like this one. The Uffizi exhibition allows the Michener to prove itself on the international stage.

“These paintings are the mother’s milk of art history,” said Katsiff. “To have works of this caliber — we’re just a country museum. We aspire to behave as the best institutions in the country. It’s an important moment for the Michener.”

Many of the paintings have never been to America before; some have never been shown publicly, even in Italy.

Art Buzz March 28, 2012: Da Vinci’s Last Painting “The Virgin and Child with Saint Anne” & Twin Mona Lisa Unveiled at Louvre Museum Exhibit



The real da Vinci code: Louvre unlocks last work

Source: AP, 3-28-12

An intense and controversial restoration of the last great work by Leonardo da Vinci goes before the public Thursday at the Louvre Museum, revealing “The Virgin and Child with Saint Anne” in the full panoply of hues and detail painted by the Renaissance master 500 years ago.

The 18-month-long restoration of the painting that Leonardo labored on for 20 years until his death in 1519 will go a long way to raising “Saint Anne” to its place as one of the most influential Florentine paintings of its time and a step towards the high Renaissance of Michelangelo.

The cleaning has endowed the painting portraying the Virgin Mary with her mother Saint Anne and the infant Jesus with new life and luminosity. Dull, faded hues were transformed into vivid browns and lapis lazuli that had visitors awe-struck….

The exhibit brings together some 130 preparatory drawings and studies by Leonardo and his apprentices — something curator Vincent Delieuvin likened to “a police investigation” — tracing the painting’s conception and revealing to experts today the entire development over the last 20 years of Leonardo’s life….READ MORE

Art Buzz March 13, 2012: Uncovering Leonardo da Vinci’s ‘Battle of Anghiari’ will destroy one of the great legends of Renaissance art history.



Leonardo Da Vinci: nothing to find but disappointment

Uncovering Leonardo da Vinci’s ‘Battle of Anghiari’ will destroy one of the great legends of Renaissance art history.

Source: Telegraph UK, 3-13-12

 'Proof' that long lost Leonardo da Vinci masterpiece lies behind Florence painting

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National Geographic Fellow Maurizio Seracini (foreground) and his team view footage captured by the endoscope behind the Vasari wall Photo: Dave Yoder
'Proof' that long lost Leonardo da Vinci masterpiece lies behind Florence painting

Image 1 of 3
A banner showing the painting which might be hidden Photo: DARIO THUBURN/AFP/Getty Images
 'Proof' that long lost Leonardo da Vinci masterpiece lies behind Florence painting

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The endoscope and sampling tool used to investigate the air gap behind the Vasari mural in Florence’s Palazzo Vecchio Photo: Dave Yoder

It is one of the most influential paintings that never quite were. Commissioned for the Hall of the Five Hundred, the gigantic meeting room of Florence’s governing body in the city’s Palazzo Vecchio in 1504, Leonardo’s ‘Battle of Anghiari’ was to have been his largest painting, a vast fresco that was for centuries a watchword among artists for the portrayal of heroic muscular effort.

Depicting a battle of 1440, in which the papal forces, led by Florence, defeated those of Leonardo’s home city Milan, it centred on a murderous struggle between four horsemen for the possession of a standard. Their snorting steeds writhing and rolling as the knights grapple, the scene couldn’t be further from the transcendant serenity that characterised the National Gallery’s recent Leonardo blockbuster.

Yet it’s a work that changed the way artists approached the problems of movement and physical struggle. Or that is what we’ve been led to understand, for no one has set eyes on the painting for over 450 years.

Its great rival in this category of non-existent exemplar was commissioned to hang on the wall opposite: Michelangelo’s ‘Battle of Cascina’. This was to have been the place where the two giants, and the great artistic rivals, of that extraordinary period came face to face across the political fulcrum of the most important city of the Renaissance.

In fact, the whole thing was a fiasco from first to last. The two artists had as little to do with each other as possible. Leonardo, who had had problems with fresco – tempera on wet plaster – while working on the ‘Last Supper’, took the unprecedented step of applying oil paint directly onto the wall. A thunderstorm created excessive humidity, causing the colours to drip and merge into each other. Discouraged, he abandoned the project….READ MORE

Art Buzz March 13, 2012: Maurizio Seracini: Has Lost Leonardo Da Vinci the Battle of Anghiari Been Found? Mona Lisa Paint Found Behind Wall in Florence’s Palazzo Vecchio Lends Clue



Lost Da Vinci Found? Mona Lisa Paint Lends Clue

The search for a Leonardo Da Vinci masterpiece reveals intriguing traces of paint that was also used in the Mona Lisa.

Source: Discovery News, 3-13-12


  • Art experts have drilled a hole through a 14th-century frescoed wall and recovered traces of a paint once used by Da Vinci in the Mona Lisa.
  • The researchers believe this may be evidence that a long lost Da Vinci masterpiece has been hidden behind the wall.
  • The work is a painting called the “Battle of Anghiari” and its recovery would be a huge discovery.
Rubens copy of Leonardo's Battle of Anghiari

Peter Paul Rubens’ copy of Leonardo’s “The Battle of Anghiari.” Click to enlarge this image.
Wikimedia Commons

Researchers struggling to solve a longstanding Leonardo da Vinci mystery — the fate of a lost masterpiece known as the “Battle of Anghiari — have found intriguing traces of paint hidden behind a 5-inch-thick frescoed wall in Palazzo Vecchio, Florence’s 14th-century city hall.

The color is consistent with that used by the Renaissance creator of the Mona Lisa, suggesting that Leonardo’s artwork has remained hidden behind that frescoed wall for more than 500 years.

Known as the “Battle of Marciano,” the mural was painted by the renowned 15th-century painter, architect and writer Giorgio Vasari (1511-1574) in the imposing Hall of the Five Hundred. The hall was a room built at the end of the 15th century to accommodate the meetings of the Florentine Council.

PHOTOS: The Face of Da Vinci: An Enduring Mystery

Right behind that wall could lie one of the biggest discoveries in the history of art, according to art diagnostic expert Maurizio Seracini, director of the Center of Interdisciplinary Science for Art, Architecture and Archaeology at the University of California, San Diego, who has been searching for the lost masterpiece since the 1970s….READ MORE