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Pre-Raphaelites. Modern renaissance


Museo San Domenico, Forlì


From 24 February to 30 June 2024


The Fondazione Cassa dei Risparmi di Forlì proposes a new exhibition for 2024 dedicated to a fascinating artistic movement, the Pre-Raphaelites.

Over 300 works representing various artistic expressions, including paintings, sculptures, drawings, prints, photographs, furniture, ceramics, glass and metal works, textiles, medals, illustrated books, manuscripts and jewellery, will be on display in the rooms of the Museo Civico San Domenico from 24 February to 30 June 2024.

Conceived and created by the Fondazione Cassa dei Risparmi di Forlì, in collaboration with the Municipality of Forlì, the exhibition is curated by Cristina Acidini, Francesco Parisi, Liz Prettejohn and Peter Trippi with the collaboration of Tim Barringer, Stephen Calloway, Charlotte Gere, Véronique Gerard Powell and Paola Refice, under the general management of Gianfranco Brunelli. The exhibition project, curated by Studio Lucchi & Biserni, brings masterpieces from the most important national and international institutions to Italy. The exhibition catalogue is published by Dario Cimorelli Editore.

A group of rebellious young artists in mid-19th-century Victorian England created the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood in 1848 with the aim of rejuvenating English art, which they considered to be in decline due to the excessively formal and strict rules imposed by the Royal Academy.

John Everett Millais, William Holman Hunt and Dante Gabriel Rossetti, founders of the Brotherhood, rejected the conventions of great Italian Renaissance art, and particularly Raphael, promoting a return to the purity of medieval art. The Pre-Raphaelites drew on a wide range of influences and historical elements, albeit without making a strict distinction between the various periods. This movement was not, however, merely a reactionary return to the styles of the past, but rather a visionary project that transformed the works of these artists into something decidedly modern.

The Pre-Raphaelites. Modern Renaissance will reconstruct the powerful impact of historical Italian art on the British Pre-Raphaelite movement between the 1840s and the 1920s. This is a theme that has not yet been explored in depth in Italy, which will be investigated by flanking British works with a substantial representation of Italian models: a challenge that this project intends to rise to thanks to generous loans from museums all over Italy. The exhibition will also intrigue English-speaking audiences by showing works by late 19th century Italian artists who were inspired by their British precursors for the first time.