FIRENZE: L’ARTE NEI MUSEI
Gabriele Calzeroni Concierge-Monna Lisa Hotel
The Museum is situated in Palazzo della Crocetta, built on an unusual cruciform design by Giulio Parigi for the Archduchess Maria Maddalena d’Austria (1620). Entrance is from Via della Colonna near Piazza SS.Anunziata, where there is also a railed-off gardencontaining several Etruscan tombs that have been recomposed using as much of the original material as possible. It is one of the most important museums in the world on the art and civilization of the Etruscans, though it also contains many fine examples of Greek art. The important Egyptian Museum is situated on the first floor, the second in Italy after the one in Turin; the collection was formed by the Nizzoli and Schiapparelli collections, together with the series of excavations carried out between 1828-29 by Ippolito Rossellini with François Champollion, the scholar who decoded hieroglyphics. One of the famous victims of the 1966 flood, the museum has since been carefully restored and is now able to exhibit all its treasures to the public. The Etruscan bronze Chimera (5th-4th cents. b.c.) The collection originated with the Medici Collections (from the time of Cosimo the Elder) and was then further enriched by the Lorraine family and exhibited in the Uffizi until 1888, when it was moved to Palazzo Crocetta. Some of the most famous works it contains include the Chimera, a bronze masterpiece of Etruscan sculpture (5th-4th century B.C.), discovered in the countryside near Arezzo in 1553 and restored by Benvenuto Cellini; the huge silver Amphora of Baratti (4th century B.C.), decorated with about 130 images of Gods and heroes; the Arringatore (1st century B.C.), the large bronze portrait of the Etruscan nobleman Aule Metelle discovered near the Lake of Trasimeno in 1566; the Little Idol, a rare Greek bronze (5th century B.C.) found in Pesaro in 1530, which still has the Renaissance base that was added when it became part of the Medici collections; the Greek Torso of an Athlete (5th century B.C.) is Greek, as also the Head of a Horse from the Hellenistic period, which was to inspire Donatello and Verrocchio for the two famous equestrian monuments in Padua and Venice. François Vase 570 b.C. The Francois Vase, signed by Ergotimos and the painter Kleitias and dated 570 B.C. is the most famous among the huge collection of vases. Found near Chiusi in 1844, its complex “black figure” decorations make it one of the most important examples of the figurative and mythological Greek culture exported to Etruria. The collection of funeral urns also includes the Mater Matuta from Chiusi (5th century B.C.), the Goddess of Dawn, which is considered practically an archetype of the Christian Madonna and Child; the Sarcophagus of Larthia Seianti (2nd century B.C.), a polychromatic terracotta found at Chiusi; the Sarcophagus of Amazzoni (4th century B.C.) and the so-called Sarcophagus of the Fat Man (Chiusi, 2nd century B.C.).
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Museo Archeologico Nazionale-Via della Colonna, 38 FIRENZE
tel. 055.23575 – 055.2948838-www.firenzemusei.it/archeologico