Art is divine

Botticelli - Spring of the Renaissance -

by Micha Christos

MUSEE 

JACQUEMART-ANDRE

Paris

September 10, 2021 - January 24, 2022

 

BOTTICELLI

Artist and Designer

Alessandro Filipepi dit Botticelli (c. 1445 - 1510) and workshop, The Judgment of Paris, c. 1482-1485,

  tempera on wood, 81 x 197 cm, Venice,

Fondazione Giorgio Cini, Galleria di Palazzo Cini, Venezia

© Fondazione Giorgio Cini

Alessandro Filipepi said Botticelli (around 1445 - 1510),

Portrait of a young woman called La Belle Simonetta, circa 1485, tempera

and oil on poplar wood, 81.8 × 54 cm, Frankfurt am Main, Städel Museum, CC BY-SA 4.0 Städel Museum,

Frankfurt am main

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Jacquemart-André Museum celebrates the creative genius of Sandro Botticelli (1445–1510) and the activity of his studio, exhibiting around forty works by this great artist from Florence during the Medici era.

 

Botticelli is one of the most illustrious painters of the Italian Renaissance despite a certain amount of mystery that still surrounds his life and the activity of his laboratory workshop which abounded with ideas and trained many artists.

The exhibition shows Botticelli as a creator but also in his role as an entrepreneur and trainer.

 

The first section presents the works of Sandro Botticelli still under the influence of his master Filippo Lippi (1406-1469) and his contemporaries such as Andrea del Verrochio. A prodigy pupil, he very quickly acquired mastery of colors and volumes and gave his very first "Virgin and Child" a very personal vision, a prelude to his recognizable style in colors and shapes.

 

Around 1465, Botticelli opened his own studio on the ground floor of the paternal villa then located via Nuova d´Ognissanti, now renamed via del Porcellana.

Alessandro Filipepi dit Botticelli (around 1445 - 1510) and workshop,

  The Coronation of the Virgin with Saint Just of Volterra, Blessed Jacopo Guidi de Certaldo, Saint Romuald, Saint Clement and a Camaldolese monk, circa 1492,

tempera and oil on wood transferred to canvas, 269.2 x 175.3 cm,

Miami Beach, Collection of The Bass,

Gift of John & Johanna Bass © Photo by Zaire ArtLab


Alessandro Filipepi dit Botticelli (c. 1445 - 1510), Madonna and Child with the young Saint John the Baptist, c. 1505, tempera and oil on canvas, 134 x 92 cm,

Florence, Gallerie degli Uffizi (Palazzo Pitti, Galleria Palatina),

Photo: Gabinetto Fotografico delle Gallerie degli Uffizi

Alessandro Filipepi said Botticelli (around 1445 - 1510),

Judith Holding the Head of Holofernes, late 1490s,

tempera on wood, 36.5 x 20 cm, Amsterdam, Rijksmuseum, Bequest of J.W.E. vom Rath,

Photo: Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam


Alessandro Filipepi said Botticelli (around 1445 - 1510),

Portrait of Julien de Medici, circa 1478–1480,

tempera and oil on wood, 59.5 × 39.3 cm,

Bergamo, Accademia Carrara © Fondazione Accademia Carrara, Bergamo

 

 

Artistic effervescence reigns in the Florence of the Medici. The exchanges of techniques between the workshops allowed Botticelli to progress in all the fields giving birth in 1480 to his famous “Madonna au Livre”.

As early as 1469, he took in the son of his former master Filippo Lippi (1457 - 1504) and Filippino quickly took a prominent place in Botticelli's studio, as evidenced by the works they produced together. They will also maintain this artistic dialogue throughout their careers.

All the pieces from the workshop are the result of active collaboration, which does not prevent their attribution to Botticelli.

Botticelli was interested in all the techniques of his time and his training as a goldsmith enabled him to execute plans and designs which were then reproduced in tapestries, embroidery or marquetry. The image of Minerva, goddess of wisdom, war and the arts, dear to the Medici, is thus depicted by Botticelli on numerous media with a constantly renewed inventiveness.

The Medici appreciated the unique style of Botticelli who painted the portrait of the young Julien de Médicis assassinated in 1478 as well as that of his mistress, the beautiful Simonetta, who embodies absolute beauty and of which Botticelli will make his eternal Venus. He will even ask to be buried at his feet because she will disappear swept away by the disease at only twenty-three years old. Botticelli will continue to give her features to the Goddess of Love until the end of her own days.


 

 

 

 

 

 

A pure emblem of the end of the Quattrocento, Venus embodies the perfect synthesis between the ancient myth and the poetic philosophy of the Florentine humanists.

The patrician residences of Florence like to adorn themselves with numerous "beautiful naked women" by the painter's hand.

 

Botticelli's studio also produces very important religious works from the altarpiece, pala in Italian to the tondo, a circular format very popular in Florence.

These works placed above altars in churches and chapels brought many new clients fascinated by the recognizable style of the master.

 

A true designer, Botticelli faced the proliferation of orders. He rationalizes his production and creates model books and cartoons, preparatory drawings on a full scale, which allows him to delegate the execution to his assistants while reserving the design of his works.

Alessandro Filipepi known as Botticelli (c. 1445 - 1510),

Madonna and Child known as Madonna with book,

c. 1482-1483, tempera on wood, 58 x 39.6 cm, Milan,

Museo Poldi Pezzoli © Museo Poldi Pezzoli - fotodarte


Alessandro Filipepi dit Botticelli (c. 1445 - 1510), Venus pudica, c. 1485-1490,

oil on canvas, 158.1 x 68.5 cm,

Berlin, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, Gemäldegalerie,

Photo © BPK, Berlin, Dist. RMN-Grand Palais / Jörg P. Anders

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 At the end of the 1480s, the power of the Medici was shaken by the growing audience of the monk Savonarola (1452 - 1498), whose apocalyptic sermons had a violent impact on the Florentine population. The question of Botticelli's membership in the Soaparol movement is still debated.

 

His creative mind reacts keenly to the prophetic visions and the tormented eloquence of the monk. At the end of the 15th century, his work reflected a real aesthetic questioning giving rise to more compact, more modest forms but nevertheless retained its softness.

 

Aging, Botticelli could not contribute as much to the creations of his workshop and, after having embodied a resolutely modern art, he fell into oblivion before being rediscovered in the 19th century, never to leave the rank of the eternal stars of the illustrious artists on the international scene.

 

 

Botticelli gave birth to Venus and Spring, he remains forever famous thanks to the immortal attractions of this luminous and youthful beauty.


Master of Gothic Buildings (Jacopo Foschi?, Active in Florence around 1485 - around 1520) after Botticelli (around 1445 - 1510), The Virgin of the Magnificat, 1490s, tempera on wood, 114.5 cm in diameter, Montpellier

Méditerranée Métropole, Fabre Museum, on deposit from the Louvre Museum, 1979

© Fabre Museum of Montpellier

Mediterranean Metropolis / photography Frédéric Jaulmes