Pontormo takes the U.S. by storm
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Pontormo takes the U.S. by storm

Pontormo's painting from Carmignano has left Italy for the first time for the exhibition Miraculous Encounters in order to bring awareness to the fundraising efforts of the church and complex of San Michele Arcangelo.

Fri 07 Sep 2018 6:30 AM

New Yorkers now have the rare treat of seeing Pontormo’s Visitation, an absolute masterpiece, in person at the Morgan Library and Museum. The painting from Carmignano has left Italy for the first time in history for the exhibition Miraculous Encounters in order to bring awareness to the fundraising efforts of the church and complex of San Michele Arcangelo. Restoring the painting’s Renaissance home in this Tuscan hamlet requires substantial and urgent funding, hence the launch of a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo concurrent with the show in New York.


Who is Pontormo?

Pontormo’s biography in Vasari’s Lives (as displayed in the exhibition at Palazzo Pitti)


Pontormo is a 16th-century painter (born 1494 in Pontormo, near Empoli, named Jacopo Carrucci) and was something of a rebel. His style, sometimes termed Mannerism, broke from High Renaissance harmony and naturalism. Pontormo is known for his emotionally charged religious works such as the Deposition in the Capponi Chapel at Santa Felicita in Florence, as well as for elegant portraits.


The exhibition in New York and LA

Pontormo’s Visitation (1528-30)


Curated by Bruce Edelstein and Davide Gasparotto, this show features two of the artist’s masterpieces reunited for the first time with their preparatory drawings conserved at the Uffizi: the Visitation from Carmignano and the Portrait of a Halberdier from the Getty Museum. The exhibition and catalogue clear up a series of mysteries surrounding this period of the artist’s life, the original intended location of the Carmignano painting and aspects of its iconography. The scholarly exhibition recently left Palazzo Pitti in Florence bound for New York (The Morgan Library & Museum, September 7, 2018 to January 6, 2019) and Los Angeles (The J. Paul Getty Museum, February 5, 2019 to April 28, 2019).

Read our interview with curator Bruce Edelstein about his research for the show.


The crowdfunding


Restoring the Carmignano complex is a long term project requiring substantial funding.  A crowdfunding has been launched as part of a larger fundraising programme with the goal of intervening on areas that will be opened as a new museum, the Museo della Visitazione. The crowdfunding is divided into two parts: online for one year, donors in Italy and anywhere in the world can give on the website pontormo.it. An intensive campaign on Indiegogo is running concurrently with the exhibition in New York City to raise funds for urgent interventions.

The state of the church and convent

This video eloquently sums up the extent of ruinous state of this building – surrounded by much beauty, but itself in great need of repair.


Talks in New York this fall


The curators will participate in the following talks and roundtables.

  • Sept. 6, 2018, 6:30pm: NYU Casa Italiana Zerilli-Marimò / Edelstein, “The Carmignano Visitation”
  • Oct. 24, 2018, 6:30pm, Morgan Library & Museum / Gasparotto, “Pontormo from Drawing to Painting”
  • Oct. 30, 2018: Istituto di Cultura Italiana / Roundtable on Pontormo
  • Nov. 1, 2018: Institute of Fine Arts, NYU / Daniele Rossi (restorer)


Get involved: become a patron of the arts!

Pledge NOW – CLICK HERE – to help restore this building and create the new Museo della Visitazione that will improve the experience of viewing this painting when you visit Carmignano.



Donors to the Indiegogo campaign may choose from a series of rewards ranging from the symbolic recording of names in an archival book of donors to a holiday in Carmignano, where residents hope people will be inspired to visit after discovering the area through this campaign. The “perks” on Indiegogo have been made possible by “prize sponsors” including The Florentine English language news magazine; Biscottificio Amari from Carmignano with an assortment of handmade cookies; Lanificio Bisentino with “Made in Tuscany” shawls inspired by Pontormo’s colours; Piaggia, producer of Carmignano DOCG wines, offering wine tours and bottles of wine; local artist Valentino Grassi with prints of his work inspired by the Visitation; Elena Fulceri/Florence with Flair with a custom private tour of Pontormo in Florence; and the following hotels – Hotel Villa San Michele in Carmignano, Hotel Alexandra in Vinci, and Tenuta di Artimino.

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