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Roma, Galleria Borghese, 19 maggio - 27 agosto 2006. A cura di Anna Coliva. Milano, 2006; ril., pp. 184, ill. b/n col. num. n. t., cm 24x28. (Arte Antica. Cataloghi). Sixty masterpieces by Raphael at the Galleria Borghese in the first major monographic exhibition held in Rome devoted to this artist, the 'Roman' painter par excellence who received recognition as a universal master in Rome. Edited by Anna Coliva, director of the Galleria Borghese, and published for the exhibition, this volume investigates the paintings of Raffaello Sanzio between 1505 and 1508, when the artist, just before settling in Rome, painted the Deposition, still housed today at the Borghese Museum, the foundation of that revolutionary shift from the traditional compositional structure to the dynamic concept of space which became clear with the creation of the frescos of the Vatican Rooms. It was Raphael indeed who, upon his arrival in Rome, through his genial formal synthesis, established for once and for all the very image of doctrine, converting religious content into images of such strength that western civilisation as a whole has had to contend with their influence ever since. The iconography established then has not changed up to our time. Raffaello da Firenze a Roma aims to investigate how, from a formal, stylistic, compositional and spatial point of view, this universal vision took shape and how the artist, from being a fine Umbrian and the Florentine artist became the 'Roman' Raphael, the great historical painter. The central work of this project is the celebrated and monumental Deposition, all parts of which have been recomposed for the occasion (cymatium, predella and frieze), following the most recent studies into the original structure of this wooden altarpiece, together with the complete series of studies and preparatory drawings in order to document each passage of the work's genesis and its gradual transformation from the original idea: their presence alongside the original altarpiece constitutes a unique and unrepeatable opportunity for reflection. Next to the Deposition are those works, paintings and engravings, produced by Raphael in the same period, to illustrate the artist's research towards a completely new concept of space which was destined to change the very history of representation for ever. The works chosen to document this development underline the evolution in composition which became progressively more complex and articulate, and the position of the figures which penetrate the space and create an absolutely new relationship between plastic bodies and the space surrounding them. This close comparison between the works that were to lead the artist towards a real spatial and compositional revolution are an exhaustive illustration of the transformation that took place from the 'Florentine' Raphael to the 'Roman' Raphael who was to create the Vatican Rooms. Moreover, the monograph also provides an occasion to momentarily reconstitute the collection of Raphael's works that originally belonged to the Borghese Gallery but was partially dispersed at the end of the eighteenth century. Part of the documentary research carried out in the archives was aimed at identifying those paintings that were originally attributed to Raphael in earlier inventories but have been recognised by more recent studies as the work of other artists. The undisputed masterpieces which stand out include La Belle Jardinière (from the Louvre collection), the Madonna Colonna from the Gemaldegalerie, Berlin, the Holy Family and lamb from the Prado, the Madonna Esterházy and Portrait of a young man from Budapest, the Madonna Aldobrandini and Dream of the Knight from the National Gallery in London, the Pregnant woman from Palazzo Pitti, the Cristo benedicente from the Pinacoteca Tosio - Martinengo di Brescia, the Madonna dei candelabri from Baltimore, Madonna Niccolini-Cowper from the National Gallery in Washington, La Fornarina from Palazzo Barberini, Buchnummer des Verkäufers
Titel: Raffaello. Da Firenze a Roma.
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