Online Exhibition

Giuliano da Sangallo's Surface Architecture

An online exhibition by the Photo Library of the Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz

During the period around the foundation of the Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz and its Photothek in 1897, the career of the hitherto historiographically vague Giuliano da Sangallo received a sharper profile, thanks not least to the work of scholars like Heinrich von Geymüller, Christian Huelsen, and especially Cornelius von Fabriczy. Studies such as these could avail themselves of a growing corpus of architectural photographs that had begun to circulate since the mid-nineteenth century. In the early years of the twentieth century, and in particular under the aegis of Geymüller and Huelsen, the first systematic photographic campaigns dedicated to the architectural drawings of Giuliano were conducted. Some of these photographs were either donated by Geymüller or included in the legacy of Fabriczy, which entered the Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz in 1911. They formed the first layer of the sedimentation of images that document the work of Giuliano da Sangallo in the Photothek. The photographs taken by art historians such as Hilde Lotz-Bauer in the Thirties/Forties, or by Ralph Lieberman in the Nineties, document a variety of changing interpretations of Giuliano's architecture. These earlier photographs have now been supplemented by a new photographic campaign commissioned by the Nova Department of the Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz from Václav Šedý in 2016. Photograph 10677 from the Fabriczy bequest is a real palimpsest, with the attribution to Baccio d'Agnolo in its caption deleted and the pressmark modified following the reform of the Photothek's classification system in 1912-14. This online exhibition presents the photographs also as evidence of material and scientific practices and of the history of art-historical research on Giuliano da Sangallo.

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