Agnolo Bronzino

Agnolo Gaddi

Ambrogio Lorenzetti

Andreadi di Bonaiuto

Andrea del Castagno

Andrea del Sarto

Andrea di Bartolo

Andrea Mantegna

Antonello da Messina

Antonio del Pollaiuolo

Bartolo di Fredi

Bartolomeo di Giovanni

Benozzo Gozzoli

Benvenuto di Giovanni

Bernard Berenson

Bernardo Daddi

Bianca Cappello

Bicci di Lorenzo

Bonaventura Berlinghieri

Buonamico Buffalmacco

Byzantine art



Dietisalvi di Speme

Domenico Beccafumi

Domenico di Bartolo

Domenico di Michelino

Domenico veneziano


Duccio di Buoninsegna

Eleonora da Toledo

Federico Zuccari

Filippino Lippi

Filippo Lippi

Fra Angelico

Fra Carnevale

Francesco di Giorgio Martini

Francesco Pesellino

Francesco Rosselli

Francia Bigio

Gentile da Fabriano


Domenico Ghirlandaio


Giorgio Vasari

Giotto di bondone

Giovanni da Modena

Giovanni da San Giovanni

Giovanni di Francesco

Giovanni di Paolo

Giovanni Toscani

Girolamo di Benvenuto

Guidoccio Cozzarelli

Guido da Siena

Il Sodoma

Jacopo del Sellaio

Jacopo Pontormo

Lippo Memmi

Lippo Vanni

Lorenzo Ghiberti

Lorenzo Monaco

Lo Scheggia

Lo Spagna

Luca Signorelli


masolino da panicale

master of monteoliveto

master of sain tfrancis

master of the osservanza

matteo di giovanni

memmo di filippuccio

neroccio di bartolomeo

niccolo di segna

paolo di giovanni fei

paolo ucello


piero della francesca

piero del pollaiolo

piero di cosimo

pietro aldi

pietro lorenzetti



sandro botticelli

sano di pietro


simone martini

spinello aretino

taddeo di bartolo

taddeo gaddi

ugolino di nerio



Portrait of Giorgio Vasari (self-portrait?), north-west wall, state after cleaning of the paint surface and fixation of the coating,
state during cleaning of the paint surface, Casa Vasari, Florence.

Travel guide for Tuscany

Giorgio Vasari


Giorgio Vasari (30 July 1511 – 27 June 1574) was an Italian painter, writer, historian and architect, who is today famous for his biographies of Italian artists, considered the ideological foundation of art-historical writing.
Vasari was born in Arezzo, Tuscany. Recommended at an early age by his cousin Luca Signorelli, he became a pupil of Guglielmo da Marsiglia, a skillful painter of stained glass. Sent to Florence at the age of sixteen by Cardinal Silvio Passerini, he joined the circle of Andrea del Sarto and his pupils Rosso Fiorentino and Jacopo Pontormo where his humanist education was encouraged. He was befriended by Michelangelo whose painting style would influence his own.
In 1529, he visited Rome and studied the works of Raphael and others of the Roman High Renaissance. Vasari's own Mannerist paintings were more admired in his lifetime than afterwards. He was consistently employed by patrons in the Medici family in Florence and Rome, and he worked in Naples, Arezzo and other places. Many of his pictures still exist, the most important being the wall and ceiling paintings in the great Sala di Cosimo I of the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, where he and his assistants were at work from 1555, and the frescoes he started inside the vast cupola of the Duomo, completed by Federico Zuccari and with the help of Giovanni Balducci. He also helped organize the decoration of the Studiolo, now reassembled in the Palazzo Vecchio.


As an architect, Vasari was perhaps more successful than as a painter. His loggia of the Palazzo degli Uffizi by the Arno opens up the vista at the far end of its long narrow courtyard, a unique piece of urban planning that functions as a public piazza, and which, if considered as a short street, is the unique Renaissance street with a unified architectural treatment. The view of the Loggia from the Arno reveals that, with the Vasari Corridor, it is one of very few structures that line the river which are open to the river itself and appear to embrace the riverside environment.

In Florence, Vasari also built the long passage, now called Vasari Corridor, which connects the Uffizi with the Palazzo Pitti on the other side of the river. The enclosed corridor passes alongside the River Arno on an arcade, crosses the Ponte Vecchio and winds around the exterior of several buildings.

Vasari also renovated the fine medieval churches of Santa Maria Novella and Santa Croce, from both of which he removed the original rood screen and loft, and remodelled the retro-choir in the Mannerist taste of his time.
In 1562 Vasari built the octagonal dome atop the Basilica of Our Lady of Humility in Pistoia, an important example of high Renaissance architecture.[1]

In Rome, Vasari worked with Giacomo Barozzi da Vignola and Bartolomeo Ammanati at Pope Julius III's Villa Giulia. Vasari enjoyed high repute during his lifetime and amassed a considerable fortune. In 1547, he built himself a fine house in Arezzo (now a museum honouring him), and laboured to decorate its walls and vaults with paintings. He was elected to the municipal council or priori of his native town, and finally rose to the supreme office of gonfaloniere.

In 1563, he helped found the Florence Accademia e Compagnia delle Arti del Disegno, with the Grand Duke and Michelangelo as capi of the institution and 36 artists chosen as members. Vasari died at Florence on 27 June 1574.


The West Corridor of the Gallery, heads towards the Arno and then, raised up by huge arches, follows the river as far as the Ponte Vecchio, which it crosses by passing on top of the shops. The meat market on the bridge was at this time trasferred elsewhere, so as not to offend the Grand Duke's sensitive nose with unpleasant smells on his walk, and replaced (from 1593) with the goldsmiths who continue to work there today.

The most important example of Vasari's architecture is the Uffizi (Offices), commissioned by Cosimo I de' Medici to house the functions and records of his government and to impress Tuscans with the vastness of his bureaucracy. By unifying the regions's administration, the building expresses the political unity achieved by Cosimo. Its four stories line three sides of a space that is more like a street than a piazza. The Uffizi derives its effect from the repetition of elements: two Tuscan columns and a pier on the ground story, while on the second story a triplet of mezzanine windows alternates with Michelangelesque consoles. The third story features another triad of windows, and the open loggia of the fourth (now unfortunately glazed) reflects the Tuscan columns of the ground story. The only break in the uniformity comes at the end, where a central arch with a Palladian motif above it opens the vista in the direction of the Arno River.
The basic outlines of the plan may have been suggested to Vasari by Cosimo I. The building was completed in the 1580s by Bernardo Buontalenti and Alfonso Parigi.

Uffizi Gallery

The Vasari Corridor and Uffizi Gallery, seen from the Arno River

The Lives

As the first Italian art historian, he initiated the genre of an encyclopedia of artistic biographies that continues today. Vasari coined the term "Renaissance" (rinascita) in print, though an awareness of the ongoing "rebirth" in the arts had been in the air from the time of Alberti. Vasari's Le Vite de' più eccellenti pittori, scultori, ed architettori (Lives of the Most Eminent Painters, Sculptors, and Architects) — dedicated to Grand Duke Cosimo I de' Medici — was first published in 1550. It included a valuable treatise on the technical methods employed in the arts. It was partly rewritten and enlarged in 1568, with the addition of woodcut portraits of artists (some conjectural).

The work has a consistent and notorious bias in favour of Florentines and tends to attribute to them all the developments in Renaissance art — for example, the invention of engraving. Venetian art in particular (along with arts from other parts of Europe), is systematically ignored in the first edition. Between the first and second editions, Vasari visited Venice and while the second edition gave more attention to Venetian art (finally including Titian) it did so without achieving a neutral point of view.

Vasari's biographies are interspersed with amusing gossip. Many of his anecdotes have the ring of truth, while others are inventions or generic fictions, such as the tale of young Giotto painting a fly on the surface of a painting by Cimabue that the older master repeatedly tried to brush away, a genre tale that echoes anecdotes told of the Greek painter Apelles. With a few exceptions, however, Vasari's aesthetic judgement was acute and unbiased. He did not research archives for exact dates, as modern art historians do, and naturally his biographies are most dependable for the painters of his own generation and those of the immediate past. Modern criticism — with new materials opened up by research — has corrected many of his traditional dates and attributions. The work remains a classic, though it must be supplemented by modern critical research.
Vasari includes a sketch of his own biography at the end of his Lives, and adds further details about himself and his family in his lives of Lazzaro Vasari and Francesco Salviati.

Competition and "Competition"

According to the historian Richard Goldthwaite, Vasari was one of the earliest authors to use the word "competition" (or "concorrenza") in Italian in its economic sense. He used it repeatedly, but perhaps most notably while explaining the reasons for Florentine preeminence, in the introduction to his life of Pietro Perugino.
In Vasari's view, Florentine artists excelled because they were hungry, and they were hungry because their fierce competition for commissions each with the others kept them hungry. Competition, he said, is "one of the nourishments that maintain them."

St Luke Painting the Virgin, fresco in Santissima Annunziata, Florence

Giorgio Vasari, St Luke Painting the Virgin, after 1565, fresco, Santissima Annunziata, Florence

The sheer scale of his book, the Lives of the Artists reveals just how much Vasari did to dignify his profession and not just himself. He was acutely conscious of the roles the artist could play in a cultured society and he did his best to live as well as to promote the part. He was instrumental in founding the Accademia del Disegno in Florence in the early 1560s and contributed its keynote fresco, St Luke Painting the Virgin, to its chapel with the same dedication at SS Annunziata.
Saint Luke painting the Virgin, (Lukas-Madonna in German or Dutch), is a devotional subject in art showing Saint Luke painting the Virgin Mary with the Baby Jesus. Such paintings were often painted for chapels of Saint Luke in European churches during the Renaissance, and often include the pose of the Salus Populi Romani, based on the legend of Luke's portrait of Mary. Versions of the subject were sometimes painted as the masterpiece, in the original sense, that many guilds required an artist to submit before becoming a master.

The fresco The Studio of the Painter is part of the paintings decorating the house of Vasari in Florence.
It is characteristic of Vasari's self-confidence that the artistic and intellectual effort he invested in designing his own home was comparable to that which he expended on the residences of those who commissioned his work. He decorated his house in Arezzo between 1542 and 1548; toward the end of his life he also frescoed his Florentine house, which had been given to him by Duke Cosimo I in 1561. In both cases the paintings refer to the role of the painter, who saw himself in the tradition of ancient painters (to whom individual episodes of both cycles are devoted).


The Studio of the Painter,
c. 1563, fresco, Casa Vasari, Florence

Palazzo della Carovana on the Piazza dei Cavalieri in Pisa

Pisa, Palazzo della Carovana on the Piazza dei Cavalieri

The Palazzo dei Cavalieri stands on the Piazza dei Cavalieri (Knights' Square) which was for many years the political and social centre of the city. The palace was originally the Palazzo degli Anziani (Palace of the Elders); then in 1562 Giorgio Vasari began the rebuilding and enlargement which produced the magnificent Palazzo dei Cavalieri or Palazzo della Carovana, named after the training courses for knights (cavalieri) of the Order of St Stephen which were held here; the courses were known as carovane (caravans). The imposing façade is decorated with sgraffito ornament, coats of arms and busts of six Grand Dukes of Tuscany (from Cosimo I to Cosimo III). The effect of the building is enhanced by the wide projection of the roof and the handsome double staircase leading up to the entrance.

The decoration of the façade is also directed by Vasari. It is composed in three layers; the lower part is decorated with 12 constellation of the year, the middle with allegorical figures like Art and Virtue, and the topmost with the bust of the Medici Dukes, and at the centre, the famous emblem of the Medici family.
Since Napoleon founded the Normal School in 1810 and gave the use of the building to the school, it is still occupied by the Scuola Normale
The words sgraffito and sgraffiti come from the Italian word sgraffiare (”to scratch”), ultimately from the Greek γρ?φειν (gráphein), meaning “to write”.
Graffiti, the bane of all modern cities in the form of spray paint, in its original sense refers to marks scratched onto a surface with a tapered point. The graffito technique has been used since prehistoric times. Decades ago, my father showed me graffito animals, birds and people carved on the tufa cave walls in northern New Mexico. But in Florence, starting in the 1400s, it was a technique of wall design, where the top layer of pigment or colored plaster is scratched through to reveal an underlying layer.
The historian and artist Giorgio Vasari recorded the graffito technique step by step. First, one paints the wall of a palazzo with a layer of lime plaster, coloured with burnt herbs or other dark pigments. Once the first layer is dry, another is painted on, this time of white plaster, distributed uniformly. On top of this second layer are laid punched-out designs, or stencils, which are reproduced on the wall with powdered charcoal (referred to as tecnica dello spolvero in Italian). A tapered awl is then used to trace the resulting pattern on the wall, cutting through the layer of white plaster to reveal the darker, underlying layer. Thus, by using the same colours as a palazzo’s frescos, the graffito designs could be used to add shadow and depth to the overall decoration.



Salone Dei Cinquecento, Palazzo Vecchio, Florence

With the growth of his stature and cultural ambitions when he was compiling and writing his book, the Lives of the Artists, the nature of Vasari's commissions fundamentally altered in the final thirty years of his life, from individual works such as altarpieces to grand enterprises in different media requiring a controlling hand over a large body of assistants. To accomplish these great projects he organized a vast workshop on a scale unprecedented in Florence.

Many of his pictures still exist, the most important being the wall and ceiling paintings in the great Sala di Cosimo I of the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, where he and his assistants were at work from 1555, and the frescoes he started inside the vast cupola of the Duomo, completed by Federico Zuccari and with the help of Giovanni Balducci.

The best example of the grand enterprises are the ceiling and walls of the main room, the Sala del Cinquecento, completed 1565. The ceiling is divided into 39 panels depicting episodes from the history of Florence and the Grand-duchy of Tuscany. Along the upper part of the walls are battle scenes by Vasari, below are a series of statues and marble groups.

Salone Dei Cinquecento
Salone Dei Cinquecento

The massive Salone dei Cinquecento (Room of the Five Hundred) once held the Council of the Five Hundred, a governing body created by Savonarola during his short stint in power. The long room is largely decorated with works by Giorgio Vasari, who orchestrated the redesign of the room in the mid-16th century. It contains an ornate, coffered and painted ceiling, which tells the story of the life of Cosimo I de' Medici, and, on the walls, gigantic depictions of battle scenes of Florence's victories over rivals Siena and Pisa.
Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo were initially commissioned to produce works for this room, but those frescoes have been "lost." It is believed that Leonardo's Battle of Anghiari frescos still exist beneath one wall of the room. Michelangelo's Battle of Cascina drawing, which had also been commissioned for this room, was never realized on the walls of the Salone dei Cinquecento, as the master artist was called to Rome to work on the Sistine Chapel before he could begin work in the Palazzo Vecchio. But his statue Genius of Victory located in a niche at the southern end of the room is worth a look.



Giorgio Vasari | Salone Dei Cinquecento, ceiling decoration

Giorgio Vasari, Salone Dei Cinquecento, ceiling decoration, completed 1565, oil on canvas, Palazzo Vecchio, Florence

Vasari had a well disciplined army of assistants, and with their aid he was able to cover numerous Florentine and Roman walls and ceilings with frescoes and oil paintings. While these are often unreal and pompous, they seldom lack decorative effect or historical interest. Enormous altarpieces from his studio line the side aisles of Florentine churches, vast battle scenes and smaller decorative works fill the halls and smaller chambers of the Palazzo Vecchio. In the centre the scene of Cosimo's Return from Exile in 1434 is depicted, while other episodes from the life of Cosimo the Elder are around.
The decoration of large halls with the deeds of the nobility and their ancestors was intended to inspire the viewer's admiration. The depiction of such events from the recent past has a long tradition. Most such cycles in the first half of the sixteenth century, however, are dedicated to a single person or event. By contrast, from the middle of the century onward this genre was increasingly devoted to the representation of dynasties. The first steps in this direction were taken by a family that did not belonged to the old aristocracy, but knew enough to exploit skillfully the memory of its ancestors for propaganda purposes - namely the Medici in Florence during the years of that city's transition from a republic to a principate. Duke Cosimo I openly exploited the depiction of the history of the older Medici in the Palazzo Vecchio to justify his own position. This decoration occupied Vasari and his workshop from 1556 to 1571, with interruptions, and its final version comprised more than a hundred individual depictions of historical themes.

Art in Tuscany | Palazzo Vecchio in Florence

The Last Judgment

Giorgio Vasari, The Last Judgment (detail), 1572-79, fresco, Duomo, Florence

Domes, which vault the crossing and altar of countless churches, lend themselves well to being transformed into paintings of the sky. The round shape above our heads seems to open onto a higher world, so that God and the things of heaven become visually present at the church holiest spot.

The Last Judgment in the enormous dome of the cathedral in Florence was painted from 1572 onward. Vincenzo Borghini had drawn up a learned theological program as early as 1570, Giorgio Vasari was responsible for executing it, but he died in 1574. Federico Zuccaro completed the frescoes in 1575-79. High up in the fresco in the dome, around the cupola, hovers a temple with the twenty-four elders of the Apocalypse; beneath this, on terraced registers, follow choirs of angels with the instruments of the Passion, then groups of saints, then personifications of the gifts of the Holy SXpirit, of the virtues, and of the beatitudes, and finally the regions of hell with various deadly sins. The composition of the fresco thus takes into account the architectonic form of the vault in its eight sections, hard upon one another. There is no attempt to dissolve the architectural structure completely by means of illusionistic painting.

The temple and the zones of heaven for four of the eight sections of the vault were completed under Vasari's direction.

The spectacular composition is organized in four strips, while the fifth is occupied by a false loggia from which gigantic prophets look down



Giorgio Vasari, The Last Judgment (detail), 1572-79, fresco, Duomo, Florence

Italian Renaissance painting        
13th-14th - century

Gothic and the beginning of the Renaissance style
15th - century

  16th century

High Renaissance and Mannerism
Andrea di Bologna
Andrea di Bonaiuto da Firenze
Bartolomeo Bulgarini
Bartolomeo da Camogli
Caporali, Bartolomeo
Dietisalvi di Speme
Duccio di Buoninsegna
Gentile da Fabriano
Giotto di Bondone
Giovannetti, Matteo
Giovanni da Milano
Guglielmo Veneziano
Guido da Siena
Guido di Graziano
Jacobello del Fiore
Jacobello di Bonomo
Jacopo di Cione
Lippo Memmi
Lorenzetti, Ambrogio
Lorenzetti, Pietro
Lorenzo Monaco
Lorenzo Veneziano
Martini, Simone
Master Bertram
Master of Aringhieri
Master of Badia a Isola
Master of Citta di Castello
Master of Elsino
Master of Faenza
Master of Giovanelli Madonna
Master of Leningrad Diptych
Master of Maesta Gondi
Master of Monteoliveto
Master of Panzano
Master of Saint Veronica . N
Nelli, Ottaviano
Niccolo di Segna
Nicolo di Pietro
Paolo Veneziano
Pisano, Andrea
Pisano, Giovanni
Rinaldo da Siena
Salimbeni, Jacopo
Salimbeni, Lorenzo
Segna di Buonaventura
Stefano di Sant`Agnese
Sweerts, Michiel
Taddeo di Bartolo
Traini, Francesco
Ugolino di Nerio
Unknown Artists
Vigoroso da Siena
Alberti, Antonio
Alberti, Leon Battista
Andrea di Bartolo
Andrea di Giusto Manzini
Angelico, Fra
Antonello da Messina
Antoniazzo Romano
Antonio da Viterbo
Baccio d'Agnolo
Baldassare d'Este
Baldovinetti, Alesso
Barbari, Jacopo de'
Bartolomeo da Miranda
Bartolomeo della Gatta
Belfuco, Pietro
Bellini, Giovanni
Bellini, Jacopo
Belliniano, Vittore
Benaglio, Francesco
Benedetto da Maiano
Benvenuto di Giovanni
Bergognone, Ambrogio
Berruguete, Pedro
Bertoldo di Giovanni
Biagio di Antonio Tucci
Bicci di Lorenzo
Blaz Jurjev Trogiranin
Bonfigli, Benedetto
Botticelli, Sandro
Botticelli, workshop of
Botticini, Francesco
Bramante, Donato
Bregno, Andrea
Brunelleschi, Filippo
Carnevale, Fra
Carpaccio, Vittore
Castagno, Andrea del
Cima da Conegliano
Cossa, Francesco del
Coustens, Pieter
Cristoforo di Geremia
Crivelli, Carlo . D
Delitio, Andrea
Domenico di Bartolo
Domenico di Michelino
Domenico Veneziano
Ercole del Fiore
Erri, Agnolo degli
Faffeo, Cristoforo
Foppa, Vincenzo
Francesco di Giorgio Martini
Fungai, Bernardino
Gatti, Saturnino de
Ghiberti, Lorenzo
Ghirlandaio, Domenico
Giambono, Michele
Giovanni Antonio da Pesaro
Giovanni d'Alemagna
Giovanni da Gaeta
Giovanni di Francesco
Giovanni di Giusto
Giovanni di Paolo
Girolamo da Cremona
Girolamo di Giovanni
Gozzoli, Benozzo
Jacopo del Sellaio
Jacopo della Quercia

Laurana Luciano
Laurana, Francesco
Leonardo da Vinci - drawings
Leonardo da Vinci - paintings
Lippi, Filippino
Lippi, Fra Filippo
Littemont, Jacob deM
Mantegna, Andrea
Masolino da Panicale
Master of Andria
Master of Barberini Panels
Master of Life of Mary
Master of Osservanza
Master of Pala Sforzesca
Master of San Giovanni of Capestrano
Master of Valencia Altarpiece . Matteo di Giovanni
Melozzo da Forli
Menegello di Giovanni de Canali
Mezzastris, Pier Antonio
Mino da Fiesole
Montagna, Bartolomeo
Neroccio de Landi
Nicola di Maestro Antonio di Ancona
Nicolo di Liberatore
Orioli, Pietro di Francesco
Pagano, Francesco
Paolo, Giannicola di
Pasti, Matteo de
Perugino, Pietro
Pesellino, Francesco
Pier Francesco Fiorentino
Piero del Massaio
Piero della Francesca
Piero di Cosimo
Pietro di Galeotto
Pietro di Giovanni d'Ambrogio
Pollaiuolo, Antonio del
Pollaiuolo, Piero del
Predis, Ambrogio de
Robbia, Luca della
Roberti, Ercole
Rosselli, Cosimo
Sano di Pietro
Santi, Giovanni
Scacco, Cristoforo
Signorelli, Luca
Strozzi, Zanobi
Tura, Cosme
Uccello, Paolo
Unknown Artists
Verrocchio, Andrea del
Vico, Enea
Vivarini, Alvise
Vivarini, Bartolomeo
Zoppo, Marco
Arcimboldo, Giuseppe
Bandinelli, Baccio
Barocci, Federico
Bartolommeo, Fra
Bassano, Jacopo
Beccafumi, Domenico
Boltraffio, Giovan Antonio
Bronzino, Agnolo . Bugiardini, Giuliano
Carraci, Annibale
Cellini, Benvenuto
Costa, Lorenzo
Fontana de Zappis, Lavinia
Lorenzo di Credi
Michelangelo . P
Procaccini Carlo Antonio
Romano, Giulio
Vasari, Giorgio
Veronese, Paolo
Giorgio Vasari - Six Tuscan Poets - Google Art Project

Giorgio Vasari, Six Tuscan Poets, c. 1544. From left to right: Marsilio Ficino, Cristoforo Landino, Francesco Petrarch, Giovanni Boccaccio, Dante Alighieri and Guido Cavalcanti.[2]


Giorgio Vasari | Lives of the Most Eminent Painters Sculptors and Architects

Art in Tuscany | Art in Tuscany | Giorgio Vasari | Lives of the Most Excellent Painters, Sculptors, and Architects
Volume I | Cimabue to Agnolo Gaddi
Volume II | Berna to Michelozzo Michelozzi
Volume III | Filarete And Simone To Mantegna
Volume IV | Filippino Lippi To Domenico Puligo
Volume V | Andrea Da Fiesole to Lorenzo Lotto
Volume VI | Fra Giocondo To Niccolò Soggi
Volume VII | Tribolo to Il Sodoma
Volume VIII | Bastiano to Taddeo Zucchero
Volume IX | Michelagnolo To The Flemings

Lives of the Most Eminent Painters Sculptors and Architects, Giorgio Vasari | download pdf

Bibliography: Le vite de'più eccellenti pittori, scuttori e architetti. Florence: Lorenzo Torrentino, 1550. Enlarged ed., Florence: T. Giunti, 1568.
Lives of the Most Eminent Painters, Sculptures and Architects.
Translated by Gaston du C. de Vere. 10 vols. London: Macmillan and the Medici Society, 1912-15; Ragionamenti del Sig. cavaliere Giorgio Vasari, pittore et architetto aretino, sopra le inuentioni da lui dipinte in Firenze nel palazzo di Loro Altezze Serenissime. Florence: F. Giunti, 1588.

The British Museum | Le vite de'più eccellenti pittori, scuttori e architetti. Florence: Giunti, 1568

Persistence and fashion in art | Italian Renaissance from Vasari to Berenson and beyond


Travels with Vasari

Two-part documentary exploring the work of Italian Renaissance chronicler Giorgio Vasari | BBC - Travels with Vasari Part 1, 1-4

BBC - Travels with Vasari Part 1, 1-4



Holiday home in Tuscany, Casa Santa Pia
Holiday homes in the Tuscan Maremma | Podere Santa Pia



Podere Santa Pia
Podere Santa Pia, giardino
Cypress trees between San Quirico d'Orcia and Montalcino, one of the bird trapping techniques to capture wild birds.
Bagni San Filippo

Villa I Tatti
Bagni San Filippo
Villa di Geggiano
Palazzo Medici Riccardi, Florence
Piazza della Santissima Annunziata
in Florence
Florence, Duomo

Casa Vasari in Florence

When people hear the name “Casa Vasari”, they first think of the Casa Vasari in Arezzo (1542-48), which became a museum in 1955.
Giorgio Vasari’s Florentine residence is a stone’s throw from Santa Croce in the street of the same name, Borgo Santa Croce, house number 8.
From Vasari’s original residence, which is not easily accessible even today, only the frescoes in the Sala Grande (around 1572) have survived, and they are in a precarious state of conservation.

Portraits of the Artists

'In the second edition of “Lives”, which was published in Florence in 1568, Vasari had not only extensively revised and added to the book, but also preceded the individual lives with a woodcut showing a portrait of the respective artist. These representations were used as templates for the portrait medallions in the upper frieze in the Sala Grande, for which Vasari selected from the total of 159 lives thirteen artists who he held in particularly high admiration: Cimabue und Giotto as forerunners, Brunelleschi, Donatello, and Masaccio as the founders of Renaissance art, followed by Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, and finally Michelangelo, who Vasari admired throughout his life. Further portraits here are of Raphael’s followers Perin del Vaga and Giulio Romano; Andrea del Sarto, one of his teachers, and Rosso Fiorentino, whose art was a powerful influence on Vasari’s early works; and finally, Francesco Salviati, who had worked together with Vasari in Rome. With this sequence of pictures, which can be assigned to the tradition of the “uomini illustri”, Vasari succeeded in creating an impressive illustration of the newly earned self-assurance of the artist in the 16th century.'

See also Portraits of the Artists | Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz
Address: Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz – Max-Planck-Institut, Via Giuseppe Giusti 44
50121 Florence

Umberto Baldini, Pietro Alessandro Vigato, The frescoes of Casa Vasari in Florence, an interdisciplinary approach to understanding, conserving, exploiting and promoting, 2006, Polistampa, Firenze.


Portraits of the Artists, Giotto, Masaccio,
and Raphael
Museo di Casa Vasari in Arezzo

In 1540 Vasari bought the house situated in Via XX Settembre, 55 when it was still being built. He himself was responsible for the project, the decorations and furnishings and today is a good example of Tuscan mannerist style.

In 1548 the two-storey house was ready and in 1550 was all complete in its details when he married Nicolosa Bacci. But Vasari couldn't live there for long, as he constantly had to move to Florence and Rome, following his protectors' wishes and carrying out his works. In 1554 Vasari definitevely settled in Florence with his wife where he lived for twenty years, till his death. In this house he used to keep his collection of works of art. The house was enlarged in the XIXth century and was used as a private residence until last century.
In 1955 it was restored and became a museum, containing an archive with letters by Michelangelo , Pius V and Cosmo I, XVIth century Tuscan paintings, frescoes and protraits by Vasari, a model of the Palazzo delle Logge and works by Flemish artists. The façade you can now see is not exactly as it was in Vasari's time: there was a staircase outside on the right of the present entrance door and two more doors were later opened.

Via Ricasoli, 1, 52100 Arezzo

Uffizi Gallery in Florence

The greatest art gallery in Italy is one of the largest museums in the world covering an area of about 8.000 sq.m.and a fitting memorial to the town's importance as the cradle of the Renaissance, this art museum contains one of the greatest collections of paintings in existence. It was built in the mid-sixteenth century, following a project by the architect Giorgio Vasari and still houses some of the most famous works of art by Italian and foreign painters from the 13th to 19th centuries, such as Tiziano, Cimabue, Giotto, Masaccio, Tintoretto, Leonardo, Botticelli, Michelangelo, Piero della Francesca, Raffaello, Caravaggio, Rubens, Rembrandt, Durer and Goya. The Gallery of the Uffizi was also the first museum ever to be opened to the public: in fact the Grand Duke granted permission to visit it on request from the year 1591. Its four centuries of history make the Uffizi Gallery the oldest museum in the world.
Building of the palace was commenced in 1560 by Giorgio Vasari for Cosimo I de' Medici as the offices for the Florentine magistrates ? hence the name uffizi, meaning offices. Construction work ended in 1581. Over the years, parts of the palace evolved into a storage place for many of the works of art collected by the Medici family. After the decline of the Medici, the art treasures remained in Florence, forming one of the first modern museums. The gallery had been open to visitors on request since the 16th century and in 1765 it was officially opened to the public.

Because of its huge collection, some of its works have in the past been transferred to other museums in Florence, such as some famous statues to the Bargello. In 1993, a car bomb exploded in Via dei Georgofili and damaged parts of the palace, killing five people. The most severe damage was to the Niobe room, the classical sculptures and neoclassical interior of which have been restored, although its frescoes were beyond repair. The cause has never been cleared up, although some suspect the Mafia. Today, the Uffizi is one of the most popular tourist attractions of Florence.

Art in Tuscany | Uffizi Gallery in Florence



Here is only a small selection from the world-class collection of paintings:
Cimabue (Maesta)
Duccio (Maesta)
Giotto (The Ognissanti Madonna, Badia Polyptych)
Simone Martini (The Annunciation)
Paolo Uccello (The Battle of San Romano)
Piero della Francesca (Diptych of Duke Federico da Montefeltro and Duchess Battista Sforza of Urbino)
Fra Filippo Lippi (Madonna with Child and Two Angels)
Sandro Botticelli (Primavera, The Birth of Venus, The Adoration of the Magi and others)
Hugo van der Goes (The Portinari Triptych)
Leonardo da Vinci (The Annunciation, The Adoration of the Magi)
Piero di Cosimo (Perseus liberating Andromeda)
Albrecht Durer (The Adoration of the Magi)
Michelangelo (The Doni Tondo)
Raphael (Madonna of the Goldfinch, Pope Leo X with Cardinals Giulio de' Medici and Luigi de' Rossi)
Titian (Flora, Venus of Urbino)
Parmigianino (The Madonna of the Long Neck)
Caravaggio (Bacchus, The Sacrifice of Isaac, Medusa)
Andrea del Verrocchio (The Baptism of Christ)

Address: Piazzale degli Uffizi, 50122 Firenze
Transport: Bus: Service from Santa Maria Novella Station, bus 23 | Transport in Florence


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