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Galleria dell'Accademia

Galleria Accademia Firenze

From 15 February to 19 June 2022

The Bronze Effigy of Michelangelo by Daniele da Volterra

This exhibition will mark the first time that all the bronze busts of Michelangelo were brought together in the same exhibition venue and will offer visitors a unique opportunity to compare the works up close and examine their visual and technical attributes.

This project - curated by Cecile Hollberg, Director of the scientifically and technologically advanced Galleria dell’Accademia di Firenze - that Intesa Sanpaolo and the Innovation Center decided to support together will exhibit all the centuries-old bronze depictions of Michelangelo attributed to Daniele da Volterra, while dealing with the complex relationship between the originals and its replicas and derivatives.

The authorship of bronze depictions of Michelangelo has long been an issue in the field of art history: there is a great deal of uncertainty regarding the authorship and provenance of numerous examples in various Italian and foreign collections. Recently, the restoration of a work kept at the Galleria dell'Accademia di Firenze enabled the second of the three originals cast by Daniele da Volterra in 1565 to be identified and to reassess certain attributions that, until just a few years ago, were considered certain.

Through a collaborative partnership with artist ADAM LOWE, the busts underwent a series of meticulous and technologically innovative investigations using 3D scanning. The digitalisation of shapes and surfaces made it possible to create virtual models that were useful in closely comparing the volumes of the various pieces, which were placed side by side and superimposed on a screen.