Bartolomeo della Gatta's St. Rocco returns after restoration to the Horne Museum

The 15th-century painting depicting Saint Roch by Bartolomeo della Gatta returns to the Horne Museum in Florence after restoration.

The Museo Horne in Florence welcomes back, after restoration, the San Rocco by Bartolomeo della Gatta (Florence, 1448 - Arezzo, 1502). The restoration, carried out by Valeria Cocchetti and Daniele Ciappi under the supervision of the Soprintendenza thanks to funding from Mary Mochary and Donato Massaro through Friend of Florence, allowed the painting to regain its original colors and luminosity.

In fact, the canvas had color losses and lifts on the entire surface, so the intervention was necessary, during which the iron crosspiece was removed and replaced with a system of three crosspieces with elastic joints, capable of accommodating the settling of the wooden support. In addition, color losses were integrated and previous repainting was chromatically recovered; this was a minimal intervention as far as cleaning was concerned.

Bartolomeo della Gatta made the San Rocco for the church of San Pier Piccolo in Arezzo after the Tuscan city was hit by the plague of 1485-1486. It was purchased by Herbert Horne in 1909 and restored in 1928 and 1963.

It is a tempera on panel depicting the patron saint of plague victims in the foreground with the light andelegance characteristic of the artist.

"Once again the Friends of Florence Foundation has intervened on behalf of our institution, in this case supporting a restoration of particular complexity due to the historical vicissitudes the painting has gone through. My thanks are joined by those of the President of the Horne Foundation, Antonio Paolucci, and, ideally, those of Herbert Horne himself, who, buying the panel in 1909, had noted the many faults that time had inflicted on the work, nevertheless considering it among Bartolomeo della Gatta’s best things," said Horne Museum director Elisabetta Nardinocchi.

Simonetta Brandolini d’Adda, president of Friends of Florence, added, "Working with the Horne Museum to preserve its masterpieces is always a great experience. After the restoration of the album of drawings by Giovan Battista Tiepolo, and other projects carried out within the museum, the intervention on the San Rocco sees us once again active for the Horne Foundation, an institution that is particularly close to our hearts because of the affinity of thought between Herbert Percy Horne and Friends of Florence. I would like to thank director Elisabetta Nardinocchi for involving us in this project, restorer Valeria Cocchetti, who with all her collaborators carried out the work, and donors because without their contribution all this would not have been possible."

Pictured is a detail of the San Rocco by Bartolomeo della Gatta.

Bartolomeo della Gatta's St. Rocco returns after restoration to the Horne Museum
Bartolomeo della Gatta's St. Rocco returns after restoration to the Horne Museum

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