Crumbs of Florence II

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People say Florence is an open-air museum. They’re absolutely right. There’s art everywhere in Florence, inside and outside, so much of it, that your senses are overwhelmed. Later, though, that concentrated richness is a treasure you may sink in with the hope of getting pass the dull moments of everyday life. I overuse the word “inspiration”, but I truly find it when I absorb a little bit of art. Here are some examples of thoughts generating wonders (I’ve included no less than three versions of Venus):

We need you when we’re alone
We need you when we’re tired
We need you when we’ve had enough
We need you when we want change
Please come and stay with us, dear lady
Your time, undoubtedly, has come.

“Fortitude”, the first recorded work by Sandro Botticelli. It was completed in 1470. You may find it at the Uffizi Gallery
A little less me, a little more her. The one and only Venus. Also, Botticelli. The masterpiece. The extraordinary Birth of Venus. She’s almost intimidating, I was giggling like a schoolgirl, couldn’t take a decent selfie, it’s impossible, next to her. Find her at the Uffizi Gallery.



Antonio Canova, Venere
Even the goddess of love can seem lonely sometimes.
Find it at Palazzo Pitti

I took this photo with my head tilted back, the painting adorns the ceiling in one of the rooms of Palazzo Pitti

✒What would these people say if they met us on the street? Or on a hill maybe, it’s more natural for them. What would they think of us? Running around with our business, wearing our almighty jeans and gear – headphones and mobile phones we hardly use as phones anymore. Their time was filled with rules and regulations, with things that were proper and things that were forbidden. Our time is so much looser, we have an unimaginable amount of freedom compared to them. Not that we’d feel it, we are constantly fighting for it. We fear it’s threatened by anything these days: corporations, banks, politicians, big pharma, our own state, other states, fast food industry, fast fashion industry, television, internet, our bosses, our spouses, our  commitments, our egos, our vices, our comfortable cars, basically a lot of structures, people and things want us to be their slaves. 👀
But do you realise how much time it took these two to get dressed in the morning? 😋

✒If love is or isn’t complicated, this goddess of love is definitely high maintenance. How else? 😉
This indoor vision of her reunites elements of passion, intimacy and fidelity – flowers in hand, little dog at her feet, the marriage chest in the back, a pleasant warmth, but also the air of sophistication, given the hairstyle and the jewellery.
Is she waiting to be dressed or is she just waiting for her beloved?

Venus of Urbino, by Tiziano Vecellio – museum info
This painting was purchased in 1538 by Guidobaldo della Rovere, Duke of Urbino, who simply referred to it in his correspondence with his ambassador in Venice as “a nude woman”, though Giorgio Vasari’s description of it as “a young #Venus, lying down” is now unanimously accepted. It came to Florence with the della Rovere legacy in 1631. When it entered the Uffizi in 1736 it was hung in the Tribune but was immediately covered by a sliding panel depicting Sacred Love to conceal the unashamed display of Venus’s nudity. The sliding panel was removed at the end of the century. Restored in 1996.
Another painting by Tiziano Vecellio, Flora (1515-1520)
Museum info
Up until 1641 this painting belonged to Alfonso Lopez, a businessman and Cardinal Richelieu’s agent in Amsterdam. Documented in the Imperial Gallery of Vienna after 1728, it was exchanged for another painting in the Uffizi in 1793. Over the years, unsuccessful attempts have been made to identify the woman portrayed, although the most probable hypothesis remains that of the mythological Flora. Restored in 1992.
So, the goddess of flowers and spring, I can’t say I’m surprised. 🙂

We finish our tour on the softest note, with a work of sculpture created a little closer to our times. I hope you enjoyed them as much as I did.

Silence engraved in marble. So soothing for the mood… 😊
Opimia (1877) by Emilio Franceschi, saw it at Palazzo Pitti

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