Museo degli argenti, Palazzo Pitti, Florence (IT)   16 July 2013 - 3 November 2013

Diafane passioni. Avori barocchi dalle corti europee

An exhibition of over 150 pieces, combining Florentine treasures with examples from the most important foreign museums, and other ivories never seen before, preserved in private collections. A chapter never studied before, especially in its "international" aspect, so particular to the Medici collection.

Cups and reliefs, mythological compositions and genre scenes, saints and portraits of princesses, scarabs and turned towers: all aspects of figurative and abstract art are reflected in Jewish art collected in Florence. The Medici ivories are now in the Silver Museum of the Pitti Palace, and are one of the great attractions in the ground floor rooms, where the visitor enters a magical world of diaphanous forms, with a magical grace.

Baroque ivories, by their international importance, have never been the subject of a large specific exhibition, either in Italy or abroad. It is therefore proposed to remedy this shortcoming, in Florence itself, where the works of the greatest sculptors of this technique can be found.


In terms of quantity, quality and historical and artistic significance, the Medici collection has reached levels comparable to those of the Imperial Court in Vienna and the Princely Court in Dresden.

The exhibition is divided into several sections that will cover the art of ivory from the 15th century, when it captured the attention of Lorenzo the Magnificent until the explosion of the Baroque with works by Flemish artists and works by Leonhard Kern, François Duquesnoy and Georg Petel who worked long in Italy and brought the art of ivory carving to the highest levels.

Work on loan

Matthias Bernhard BRAUN
Vierge à l'Enfant
1er quart XVIIIe siècle