Program

The fundamental tools for understanding art and cultural heritage in Italy from ancient Rome to contemporary art

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Visit to Villa Farnesina

Villa Farnesina, in the heart of Trastevere, is one of the most noble and graceful achievements of the Renaissance. Today the villa is the representative headquarter of the Accademia dei Lincei.

In the first decade of 1500, Agostino Chigi, a rich Sienese banker, commissioned Villa Farnesina to the architect Baldassarre Peruzzi, pupil of Bramante, and ordered the fresco decoration of the interior  to the most reknown artists of that period: Raffaello Sanzio, Sebastiano del Piombo, Giovanni da Udine, Giovanni Bazzi, Giulio Romano and Giovan Francesco Penni. The subjects were inspired by the Stanze of the poet Angelo Poliziano, an influent  member of the circle of Lorenzo de Medici. The visit starts with Raphael's frescoes in the loggia on the ground floor, depicting the classical and secular myths of Cupid and Psyche, and The Triumph of Galatea. In these frescoes Raffaello defined his concept of Beauty: it is not a realistic idea that he could see outside or around him; his idea of Beauty was that of an innate value which educates the taste and made him select with his eyes what could be painted or not.

The visit continues at the first floor where, on 28 August 1519, the weeding banquet between Agostino and Francesca Ordeaschi took place: in the great hall Baldassare Peruzzi painted trompe-l’oeil frescoes which represent an open loggia, between fictive columns, with different views of Rome and countryside landscapes. The visit ends with the wedding bedroom of Agostino in which Sodoma painted scenes from the life of Alexander the Great and his wife Roxanne. Villa Farnesina tour gives the opportunity to compare the most important Renaissance artist, Raffaello, with other great artists.