A bronze bust of a young Raphael, made some centuries after his death in 1520
My trip to Florence is almost upon me - I fly out tomorrow afternoon! I must admit to some degree of trepidation mixed with giddy excitement. My fascination with art history began when I was quite young, but as it has been secondary to my studies and subsequent career as a health professional, was always something that resided mainly in my imagination.
I have attended local galleries and seen the travelling exhibitions of Dali, Monet, Picasso but I have not yet seen the work of an old master in person(barring Rembrandt), in particular one that I am so enamoured of, such as Raphael or Botticelli.
One of my favourite Raphael paintings - representing the Kharites, or Three Graces. Some scholars believe it to be an accompanying panel to Vision of a Knight
All this changes when I (hopefully) arrive intact in Florence on Tuesday and set about gawking at things at my own pace. I am not sure what degree of connectivity I will have whilst I am there, so may not be able to do some liveblogging as I'd originally hoped. I hear open wifi hotspots are banned in Italy, which is a bit of a shame.
Needless to day, keep your eye on 3PP and its accompanying twitter feed in the days and weeks to come - I am bound to make some effort to echo my experiences in the digital realm.
First century CE fresco by unknown Roman artist at Pompeii, house of Titus Dentatus Panthera. It is interesting to note Raphael had no knowledge of this fresco - but may have seen a variation of it at Nero's Domus Aurea. Some believe a Roman statue remnant now in Siena was a possible inspiration.
In my absence, I will leave my beloved readers with a treat. Documentaries on Raphael are few and far between. He usually is mentioned with reverence, but often in a documentary that is discussing Leonardo or Michelangelo, or the Renaissance in general. In 2004, the National Gallery of London presented the exhibition Raphael: From Urbino to Rome. The catalogue for this exhibition by Hugo Chapman et al was extremely popular, and can still be purchased from the NGL or places like Amazon.
The clips below are taken from the video that was made to promote the exhibition. If you would like to purchase the entire presentation, please visit the National Gallery London store website