Two Must-See Art Exhibits in Northern Italy
Giovanni dal Ponte (1385-1437)
A Protagonist of Late Gothic Florentine Humanism
Galleria dell'Accademia, Florence
The late Florentine painter Giovanni dal Ponte acquired his name from the location of his studio at Santo Stefano a Ponte. He is eminent for his varied and prolific production, including panels, fresco cycles, and decorated objects, and is important for bridging late Gothic and Early Renaissance.
The exhibition at the Galleria dell’Accademia presents around 50 of his works from Italian and foreign collections with the hopes of introducing him to a wider public. Specifically, it aims to demonstrate his role in the development of Florentine early Renaissance painting.
One treasure on display is the triptych from the museum of San Donnino in Campi Bisenzio, created originally for the church of Sant'Andrea in Brozzi. It is his main surviving work from the earliest period and illustrates his influences from Gherardo Starnina.
Many of the exhibited masterpieces have been specially restored for the occasion, including the large triptych entitled The Coronation of the Virgin with Four Saints. The restoration reveals the brilliant colors and dal Ponte’s delicate drawing-technique.
Coined Canaletto, the Venetian painter is famous for his large-scale landscapes of the city, but he was also an important printmaker in etching. The majority of his works comprise of the canals and Palazzo Ducale (Doge's Palace), portraying Venice’s waning traditions with strong local colors. His nephew and pupil, Bernardo Bellotto, was also a master of vedute (large, detailed paintings or prints of a cityscape or vista) and was celebrated for his works depicting European cities.
“Bellotto e Canaletto. Lo stupor e la luce” boasts a selection of 100 paintings, drawings, engravings, and other works by the two artists, of which around a third have never been shown before in Italy. The exhibit is a result of important loans from private collections, as well as private and public museums from all around he world. Visitors are encouraged to compare and contrast the different visions and interpretations of the landscapes by Canaletto and Bellotto.