An afternoon of studies on Pier Francesco Foschi at the Accademia Gallery in Florence

On Monday, March 4, 2024, an afternoon of study is scheduled at the Galleria dell'Accademia in Florence devoted to the restorations of works by Pier Francesco Foschi that were carried out on the occasion of the current monographic exhibition at the Florentine museum.

An afternoon of study dedicated to the restorations of works by Pier Francesco Foschi that were carried out on Monday, March 4, 2024, from 3 p.m. will be held at the Accademia Gallery in Florence on the occasion of the monographic exhibition underway at the Florentine museum until March 10, 2024. The restorations have been useful in deepening our knowledge of the painter and have allowed us to rediscover some of his religious paintings, even those not exhibited in this context, enhancing them and making them readable again.

The authors of the restorations will speak at the afternoon study session, illustrating the results of their work. Each talk will be introduced by an art historical presentation of the works by scholars who collaborated on the exhibition. The event is open to the public, without the need for reservations, while places are available. At the end it will be it will be possible to visit the exhibition curated by Cecilie Hollberg, director of the Galleria dell’Accademia in Florence; Elvira Altiero, Art History Officer, head of the art history department of the Galleria dell’Accademia in Florence; Nelda Damiano, who curated the exhibition Wealth and Beauty dedicated to the artist at the Georgia Museum of Art, University of Georgia (Athens, USA); and Simone Giordani, professor of art history, scholar of Florentine Renaissance and late Renaissance painting and specialist on the painter Pier Francesco Foschi.

The first intervention will involve the restoration of Pier Francesco Foschi’s Transfiguration, an altarpiece commissioned for the Basilica of Santo Spirito in Florence in 1545-1550, currently in the Capponi d’Altopascio Chapel, located in the church’s right transept. Antonio Pinelli, professor emeritus of History of Modern Art, whose studies have been fundamental to understanding Foschi’s artistic development, will introduce the painting of a religious character that characterizes the three altarpieces executed for Santo Spirito, works that mark the peak of Foschi’s career. Kyoko Nakahara, on the other hand, will illustrate the various stages of the restoration of the painting’s pictorial surface, which has restored the bright, luminous colors of the apostles’ draperies. An intervention that also involved the original gilded frame, and which, given the majestic size of the work, was carried out on site.

De The vicissitudes of the San Benedetto a Settimo altarpiece between art, worship and restoration, Francesca Barsotti, art historian, Archdiocese of Pisa Office for Ecclesiastical Cultural Heritage, and restorers Elena Burchianti, Laura Del Muratore, Alberto Dimuccio, Enrico Rossi and Elisa Todisco will speak. The large panel with St. Peter and St. Philip Benizzi was made by Foschi together with the architect and woodworker Nanni Unghero, who executed the lost woodwork, and, perhaps, the decorator Andrea di Cosimo Feltrini, Florentine artisans professionally linked to the Servite convent of Santissima Annunziata in Florence, which largely financed the building work on the new Settimo convent in the 1630s.

The restoration of Fivizzano’s Polyptych of the Sacrament will be the focus of the following intervention, entrusted to Simone Giordani, among the curators of the exhibition, with Luigi Colombini and Maddalena Lazzareschi, restorers of the main panels with Saints Sebastian and Rocco, and Valeria Cocchetti, author of the restoration of the predella compartments at the Longhi Foundation in Florence. The two panels with St. Rocco and St. Sebastian, located at the Propositura dei SS. Antonio e Jacopo in Fivizzano (Massa-Carrara), and the two predella compartments with The Martyrdom of St. Sebastian and St. Rocco Rescued by Dog, at the Longhi Foundation, were part of one of the most spectacular altarpieces made by Pier Francesco Foschi, now dismembered. Simone Giordani has identified its original location, patronage and historical events.

Elvira Altiero and restorer Chiara Mignani in The Sacrifice of Isaac (by Andrea del Sarto): restoration and diagnostic investigations, will illustrate the case of the copy on canvas made by Foschi on Andrea del Sarto’s famous prototype. Foschi’s work, housed in the Villa del Poggio Imperiale in Florence, is displayed in the exhibition alongside Andrea del Sarto’s unfinished exemplar, now in the collection of the Cleveland Museum of Art, which was the first of the three versions he completed of this subject and the one from which Foschi punctually derived his replica.

The conclusions will fall to Nelda Damiano with Beyond the exhibition: reflections and openings toward future restoration campaigns, who will emphasize how observations on the state of preservation of some of the painter’s portraits contributed to a better understanding of his working method. An invitation, in this vein, to private collectors and public institutions to pursue future restoration campaigns in order to advance knowledge of Foschi beyond the exhibition projects dedicated to him at the Georgia Museum of Art (2022) and the Galleria dell’Accademia in Florence (2023).

An afternoon of studies on Pier Francesco Foschi at the Accademia Gallery in Florence
An afternoon of studies on Pier Francesco Foschi at the Accademia Gallery in Florence

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