Friends of Florence fund Donatello’s Saint Mark restoration

Work undertaken on the marble statue at the Orsanmichele Museum

Editorial Staff
June 20, 2019 - 14:47

Originally positioned in the exterior niche of the Orsanmichele church on via Calzaiuoli, work has begun thanks to a collaboration between the Bargello Museums and the Opificio delle Pietre Dure, made possible due to a generous donation from Friends of Florence. The statue of Saint Mark, which was removed from the church in 1977 and replaced by a copy, was created between 1411 and 1413 in a detailed realistic style and with a contrapposto pose or natural pose.





Donatello's statue of Saint Mark




During earlier restoration works, the bronze patina was removed, recovering gilding on edges of the saint's garment, in his sandals, beard and hair. Now, after more than 30 years since the last conservation effort, the marble surface of the sculpture is marked by brownish areas, perhaps due to the old patina. The decision has been made to invest in research to understand how best to address this issue.


President of Friends of Florence, Simonetta Brandolini, emphasized the necessity of this intervention, not only for this work but also to find out how best to restore the other statues in Orsanmichele, which have experienced similar effects through time. The project will be worked on in the coming months under a specialist team.

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