Miraculous Encounters in the Sala delle Nicchie

Palazzo Pitti opens Pontormo exhibition

Editorial Staff
May 8, 2018 - 17:58

On the heels of the completed restoration of the Capponi Chapel, home to several Pontormo masterpieces, Palazzo Pitti has opened an exhibition dedicated to the prominent Mannerist artist. Miraculous Encounters. Pontormo from Drawing to Painting opens as the Alabardiere (Portrait of a Halberdier), one of Pontormo's best-known portraits, returns to Florence for the first time in over 20 years, on loan from the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles, which purchased the piece in 1989 for 32.5 million US dollars.

Portrait of a Halberdier (Francesco Guardi?); Pontormo (Jacopo
Carucci), 1494-1557; Italy; 1528-1530; Oil (or oil on tempera) on
panel transferred to canvas; 95.3 × 73 cm (37 1/2 × 28 3/4 in.); 89.PA.49

Curated by Bruce Edelstein, the exhibition presents a selection of paintings and drawings, including preparatory sketches, all produced between 1528 and 1530, a particularly dramatic moment in Florentine history and prolific period for Pontormo. Visitors have the chance to compare his work as a painter of devotional subjects and as a portrait artist.

In addition to the Alabardiere's return, one key impetus for the exhibition was the recent conservation of the famed Visitation altarpiece of Carmignano, which revealed new information about Pontormo's creative process. The Visitation's preparatory drawing is displayed alongside the monumental work, positioned center-stage at the exhibition. 

Conceived and organized by the J. Paul Getty Museum of Los Angeles, the Morgan Library & Museum of New York, and the Uffizi Galleries, Miraculous Encounters will travel to the two American institutions after its initial run in Palazzo Pitti. 

Miraculous Encounters. Pontormo from Drawing to Painting
May 8-July 29, 2018
Sala delle Nicchie, Palazzo Pitti

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