For the first time in 49 years, all visitors to the Uffizi will now be able to admire the wonders of the Contini Bonacossi collection in eight newly arranged rooms.
Gian Lorenzo Bernini, Martyrdom of Saint Lawrence
The collection includes 144 pieces, from paintings and sculptures to ceramics and furniture, with works by Francisco Goya, Veronese and Tintoretto and the lesser represented Lombard and Spanish schools of art. The collection’s masterpiece is arguably Gian Lorenzo Bernini’s Martyrdrom of Saint Lawrence, an early work considered the artist’s most quintessentially Florentine.
Count Alessandro Contini Bonacossi donated the collection to the Italian state in 1969. It was housed in Palazzo Pitti from 1974, before being moved to an Uffizi-owned palazzo on via Lambertesca. The integration of the collection within the museum was financed by the Friends of the Uffizi Galleries and Amici degli Uffizi associations.
Andrea del Castagno, Madonna enthroned with
child, saints John the Baptist and Jerome, angels
and Pazzi family children
Previous access to the collection was considerably restricted, only available by booking guided tours or during special events that occurred a handful of times per year. At the rooms’ unveiling, director of the Uffizi Galleries Eike Schmidt declared the change part of the museum’s “imperative duty to ensure that such a vital part of the Florentine state collections be available to everyone in a permanent way.”