Guido Reni in mostra

Workshop organized by Linda Mueller and Samuel Vitali

Installation view of Guido Reni and Rome: Nature and Devotion at Galleria Borghese, Rome. Photo by Alberto Novelli ©Galleria Borghese

International loan exhibitions and their curatorial narratives have played a critical role in the twentieth-century reconsideration of Bolognese painter Guido Reni (1575–1642). These include the pioneering monographic show in Bologna in 1954, the two Viennese exhibitions on his drawings (1981) and on reproductive prints (1988), the traveling exhibition at Bologna, Los Angeles, Frankfurt, and Fort Worth in 1988–89, and several focus exhibitions in Rome (2002), Genoa (2007), and Florence (2008). At the same time, scholars have enriched our understanding of Reni’s art by exploring the scope and economics of his workshop production, the politics, poetics, and rhetoric of his paintings, and their entwinement with social issues in terms of religion, race, class, and gender. We have also been made aware of the diversity of Reni’s audiences in Catholic Europe and the many nuances of his contemporary reception.

This year, two exhibitions set out once more to bring the art and world of the Bolognese master closer to a modern-day audience: Guido Reni and Rome: Nature and Devotion at the Galleria Borghese, focusing on the artist’s early career, and the monographic show Guido Reni: “The Divine” at the Städel Museum, followed by an exhibition at the Prado in 2023. In dialogue with the curators of the exhibitions in Rome and Frankfurt, Francesca Cappelletti and Bastian Eclercy, who will be joined by Lorenzo Pericolo, this workshop aims to discuss the question of how curatorial framing can help a modern public grapple with Reni’s art. Which aspects have been at the core of the exhibition projects? What are the challenges curators face in exhibiting Reni’s work today, and what choices do they make in responding to them?



Francesca Cappelletti is Director of the Galleria Borghese in Rome and Professor for the history of early modern art at the University of Ferrara. She is the curator of the current exhibition Guido Reni and Rome: Nature and Devotion at the Galleria Borghese (March 1–May 22, 2022).

Bastian Eclercy is Head of Italian, French, and Spanish Paintings before 1800 at the Städel Museum in Frankfurt am Main and the curator of the upcoming exhibition Guido Reni: “The Divine” at the same museum (November 23, 2022–March 5, 2023), organized in cooperation with the Museo Nacional del Prado in Madrid.



Lorenzo Pericolo is Professor and Head of the Department for the History of Art at the University of Warwick. Together with Elizabeth Cropper, he is the co-editor of the critical edition and English translation of Carlo Cesare Malvasia’s Lives of the Bolognese Painters (1678) and the author of the recently published volumes dedicated to the biography of Guido Reni (2019).




17 May 2022, 2:30pm

This event will take place both in person and online. Working languages are English and Italian. If you would like to participate in person, please send an email to: sekr­­

Palazzo Grifoni Budini Gattai
Via dei Servi 51
50122 Firenze, Italia

To participate online please register in advance via Zoom:

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.



This event will be documented photographically and/or recorded on video. Please let us know if you do not agree with the Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz using images in which you might be recognizable for event documentation and public relation purposes (e.g. social media).


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