Francis in Florence

The Accademia Gallery spreads the gospel

Francesca Giordano
February 5, 2015

The latest exhibition at Florence's Accademia Gallery, ‘The Art of Francis - Masterpieces of Italian art and Asia from the thirteenth to the fifteenth century,’ aims to document the excellence of Franciscan art (painting, sculptures, sumptuary arts) down the centuries while also emphasizing the extraordinary evangelization work of the Franciscans in Asia as they made their way from the Holy Land to Asia.


The highlight of the exhibition in Florence’s much-loved gallery in via Ricasoli is the horn believed to have been given to the Egyptian sultan Malik-al-Kamil by Saint Francis of Assisi in 1219-20.


The exhibit displays some of the oldest devotional images of the saint from Assisi, which hands down the most famous episodes of his hagiography. In addition, a large fresco from the church of San Francesco in Udine of late Gothic culture is on view to the public, introducing the extraordinary human feat of Beato Odorico da Pordenone (1286-1331), who undertook an incredible journey around 1314, taking his missionary fervor first to Asia Minor before meeting the Mongols of the Yuan Dynasty (1279-1368) in 1323-28, and then heading for India.


Starting in the Middle Ages and leading to the origins of one of the greatest phenomena of religious and cultural history of the West and the world, this exhibition is a first for the Accademia Gallery – and for Florence.


L’arte di Francesco – Capolavori d’arte italiana e terre d’Asia dal XIII al XV secolo

Galleria dell’Accademia

Via Ricasoli, 58-60


Until October 11, 2015

For more information (in Italian), see

more articles