Tens of jewelry pieces of the Vatican Museums will be showcased in Lisbon in a pioneer exhibition dedicated to the representation of the Virgin Mary, covering over a thousand years in art history and including pieces by Rafael, Baroci or Van Dyck.
The sample is entitled Madonna and it encompasses sculptures, tapestries and paintings, staring from 3rd century art of the Roman catacombs that evidence the representation changes that of the Virgin Mary with the proliferation of Italian painting in the 14th and 15th century in the schools of Sienna, Bologna and Florence.
António Filipe Pimentel, head of the National Museum of Ancient Art (MNAA), where the exhibition will be held, declared: “’Madonna’, Treasures of the Vatican Museums compiles more than 70 pieces that highlight the influence of the Virgin Mary in western painting,”
A great example of this period is the Madonna dei Battuti by Vitale da Bologna (1330-1361), one of the most celebrated members of the Bologna school, piece that serves as the cover image of the exhibit and that arrived in Portugal from the Vatican Museums. From the Renaissance period, the sample dedicates one of the largest exhibition spaces to Rafael (1483-1520), from whom the 3 panels that make up the Oddi Altarpiece, painted between 1502 and 1504; and to Michelangelo (1475-1564), with a reproduction of his celebrated Pietà.
Flemish paintings are the protagonists of this section, featuring well-known names like Van Dyck (1599-1641) that widen the range of subjects, now with previously ignores landscapes in a bucolic setting.
“This has been a great effort of the Vatican Museums,” Rodolfo emphasized, who also defines the sample as a “journey between art and faith”. The exhibition comprises pieces of the Borghese and Corsini galleries, according to the curators of the show, Portuguese José Alberto Seabra Carvalho of MNAA and the Italian Alessandra Rodolfo of the Vatican Museums that dedicated months to select the pieces that would travel to Lisbon, whose temporal absence has forced the museum to restructure the exhibition halls that are open to the public.
More on the exhibition
In addition to being the first time that pieces from the Vatican Museums make up an exhibition in Lisbon, the sample that also involves the inauguration of cultural sponsorship granted by the La Caixa Foundation and the BPI Bank.
Madonna. Treasures of the Vatican Museums will be open for the public until September 10th.