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Italy Marks Architect Palladio's 500th Birthday

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« on: September 19, 2008, 10:20:09 am »

                                      Italy marks architect Palladio's 500th birthday

By Barbara Cornell
Sept. 19, 2008

MILAN (Reuters Life!) - Five hundred years since the birth of Andrea Palladio, a new international exhibition opens Saturday in Italy with a sweeping portrait of the skilled stonemason who became one of the world's greatest architects.
The exhibition at Vicenza's Palazzo Barbaran da Porto, itself a Palladio building, draws from more than 80 museums and libraries throughout Europe. It includes 78 original Palladio drawings, some owned by the 17th-century English architect Inigo Jones and now housed in the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).

The show was organized by the Andrea Palladio International Centre for Architectural Studies, RIBA and the Royal Academy of Arts in London, where the exhibition will move after it ends here on January 6.

Larger in scope than its predecessors, with some displays never seen by the public, it is the first large-scale Palladio exhibition in nearly 30 years.

"It's a generation ago, so many people have not had the opportunity to see a big exhibition of Palladio or to see a large number of his drawings," said co-curator Howard Burns, chairman of the Palladio centre's academic committee.

"It's a great occasion to meet him again."

Palladio's logic, harmony and motifs inspired generations of architects, from Jones, who helped establish Renaissance architecture in England, to Le Corbusier and Philip Johnson. He influenced Georgian style in England, French Neoclassicism and American Neoclassical works like the White House.

About 40 of Palladio's buildings, inspired by ancient Rome, still exist. Many are in and around his hometown, Vicenza, about 60 km (40 miles) west of Venice.

His practical modular designs, codified in his groundbreaking, much-translated work, "The Four Books," saved both time and money, allowing Palladio to adapt to the personalities and purses of his clients.

The exhibition traces his life, explores his workshop and writings and examines his influence on the future.

More than 40 paintings, including works by Veronese, Titian and Tintoretto, introduce the influential friends and patrons who helped transform him from stonecutter to superstar.

Through drawings, three-dimensional models, computer displays, even original building materials, the show provides a 360-degree view of his genius.

"This is a Palladio that even (the curators) hadn't seen before we worked on this exhibit," said Burns. "It's a different Palladio. It's a new Palladio, and I think it's a truer Palladio."

The exhibit's website is .

(Edited by Paul Casciato)
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« Reply #1 on: September 22, 2008, 12:06:48 pm »


                                                    Vicenza fetes Palladio

                                 Major show marks influential architect's 500th birthday

- Rome,
September 19 - 2008

Vicenza is paying tribute to Europe's most influential architect with a sweeping exhibition marking 500 years since the birth of Andrea Palladio (1508-1580).

Palazzo Barbaran will host the show, which opens on Saturday and features over 200 items celebrating the Italian architect's life and works. Nearly 80 signed drawings by Palladio will be the event's star attraction.

Many of these are back in Italy for the first time in nearly 400 years, after being sold in 1614 to the English architect Inigo Jones, who studied his craft in Italy. The selection provides valuable insight into Palladio's creative process.

It also gives visitors the chance to view a number of designs that failed to make it beyond the drawing board, either through lack of money or because they were considered too advanced for their time.

Palladio's designs for the Rialto Bridge in Venice, a new Palazzo Ducale and various of his characteristic white villas are among these. The curators of the exhibit have produced over 30 three-dimensional models that bring these designs to life and give a stronger sense of the subtle interactions of Palladio's spatial concepts. In addition, the show features over 40 paintings, which help construct other aspects of the architect's life. A selection of portraits by great Italian artists of the time, including Paolo Veronese, Titian and Tintoretto, depict figures from Palladio's close circle of friends, as well as his rivals, such as Jacopo Sansovino. The exhibition also showcases a series of idealized 18th-century cityscapes by artists such as Canaletto and Francesco Zuccarelli, who often worked Palladio's structures into their paintings for foreign tourists.
« Last Edit: September 22, 2008, 12:10:06 pm by Bianca » Report Spam   Logged

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« Reply #2 on: September 22, 2008, 12:08:50 pm »


The event, entitled 'Palladio 500', is the result of five years' preparation and showcases a number of discoveries that emerged during this time.

Of particular interest was the discovery by top Palladian experts from Italy, France, Britain, Germany, Spain and the US that the Renaissance architect had a hitherto unknown penchant for occasional colour. Palladio's classical Roman designs are famous for their white simplicity but the latest research suggests that a number of works originally incorporated splashes of red.

Traces of red paint have been found on several famous buildings designed by Palladio, including the Church of St. George in Venice, whose columns were repainted white in the mid-1600s. Experts are now convinced that an important element of Palladio's original design for the church was the contrast between its fiery red columns and their brilliant white bases. The exhibition, which runs until January 6, promises to be one of the biggest hits of the autumn season, with 20,000 advance tickets already sold. After Vicenza, Palladio 500 moves to the Royal Academy of Arts in London (January 31 - April 13), and then on to Washington until autumn 2009.


Palladio's La Rotonda villa in Vicenza
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