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Benozzo Gozzoli between Gothic and Renaissance in Tuscany

It was in the 15th century that the foundations for a new form of expression were laid. Through art, the link between the late Gothic past and the desire for renewal that will lead to the Renaissance and the beauty of harmonies is completed. A link between the Middle Ages and the beginning of the modern age that, through Benozzo Gozzoli, is so well-represented in the Chapel of the Magi in Palazzo Medici-Riccardi. 

The story of the journey of the Magi as a celebratory expression of the power of the Medici family during the Council of Florence for the reunification between the Eastern Church and the Western Church, held in Florence in 1439, that witnessed the re-discovery of the texts from ancient Greece. Numerous illustrious characters who had participated in the Council are depicted in this parade.

Cappella dei Magi, affresco di Benozzo Gozzoli con Il corteo guidato da Lorenzo il Magnifico
Benozzo Gozzoli, "La cavalcata dei Magi", Firenze, Palazzo Medici-Riccardi

Benozzo Gozzoli spread his Art throughout Tuscany: in San Gimignano with the expressive language of communication that we can see in the Madonna Enthroned with Child and Angels, and the saints St John the Baptist, Mary Magdalen, St Augustine and St Martha at the Civic Museum, or in the cycle of frescoes for the church of Sant'Agostino, which embodies the sacredness of the place very well; in Pisa, on the walls of the Camposanto (cemetery), with twenty-six episodes from the Old and New Testaments; in Volterra, in the Cathedral with the Cavalcade of the Magi; in Castelfiorentino with the majestic fresco of the Tabernacle of the Madonna of the Cough and the Tabernacle of the Visitation, now preserved with the sinopias at the BeGo Museum. 

Sinopia di Benozzo Gozzoli
Benozzo Gozzoli, "La regina di Saba davanti a Salomone", dettaglio. Museo delle sinopie, Pisa

This was the period in which the Florentine school affirmed itself over the Sienese school, Masaccio's perspectivism revolutionised art and Gozzoli was the artist who demonstrated its meaning in painting.
The 600th anniversary of the birth of this great master is celebrated in 2020.

  • Progetto finanziato a valere sui fondi Legge n. 77 del 20 febbraio 2006 “Misure speciali di tutela e fruizione dei siti italiani di interesse culturale, paesaggistico e ambientale, inseriti nella “lista del patrimonio mondiale”, posti sotto la tutela dell’UNESCO”