The Light of the Renaissance. Painting and
Sculpture from the Collection of the State Hermitage Museum
On November 22, 2011, as part of the Year of Italy in Russia and the
Year of Russia in Italy, an exhibit entitled The Light of the Renaissance.
Painting and Sculpture from the Collection of the State Hermitage Museum
has opened in the Republic Museum of Fine Arts in the city of
In chronological terms, the oldest work of art presented here is a Florentine
relief (painted gypsum), entitled Madonna and Child with Angels.
This piece, created in the 1470s, was made on the basis of a marble relief
by Antonio Rossellino
The della Robbias, a family of Florentine craftsmen, gained fame for
their use of the majolica technique in the creation of sculptures. The
Hermitage composition Adoration of the Child, which was created
in the workshop of Andrea della
An interesting exhibition piece here serves as an example of the Paduan school of the plastic arts in bronze. Two bronze figures used at different times and by different artists are united in the statuette entitled The Warrior: an unknown Paduan bronze caster created the horse in around 1500, and a master belonging to Leone Leoni’s circle created the warrior bearing a sword and shield in the middle of the 16th century. During the Renaissance, bronze statuettes were used as decoration in public buildings, nobles’ palaces and scientists’ offices, and, therefore, sculptors would often depict antique subjects. One of the Horses of Saint Mark, a unique classical sculpture that decorates St. Mark’s Basilica in Venice served as the model for the horse depicted in this statuette. The figure of the warrior is in the same pose as the warrior on the so-called Budapest Horse, from the Museum of Fine Arts in Budapest, whose authorship is attributed to the greatest Renaissance artist, Leonardo da Vinci.
The Venetian artistic tradition is represented by two pieces: a bronze
sculpture entitled Apollo from the first quarter of the 16th century
and a painting by Paris Bordone from the 1550’s, entitled Venus and
Mars. The unknown sculptor depicted the Ancient Greek god not as a
mighty archer, as he was in Apollo Belvedere, but as a tender youth
with a lyre in his hand. The most important thing here is not so much
the interest in antiquity as the sculptor’s striving to express the poetic
and harmonious quality of the image in accordance with the style of Venetian
art at that time. In the beginning of the 16th century, Giorgione became
a reformer in Venetian painting. As a result of his influence, this school’s
most productive master, Paris Bordone
The creator of the painting The Holy Family with John the Baptist,
Giulio Cesare Procaccini
A publication dedicated to this exhibit (to be released by “Slavia”, Saint Petersburg) with an article by the curator of the exhibit, Sergey Olegovich Androsov, the Head of the Department of Western European Fine Art of the State Hermitage Museum and a doctor of art history.