Donatello’s most famous marble sculpture, David is coming to the UK, as part of an exhibition of the Renaissance sculptor’s work at the V&A next year.

Donatello, David, Museo Nazionale del Bargello, Florence, courtesy of the Ministry of Culture. Photo: Bruno Bruchi.

Often described as the greatest sculptor of all time, Donatello contributed to major commissions of church and state; was an intimate of the Medici family and their circle in Florence, and was highly sought after in other Italian centres.

Comprising around 130 objects, the exhibition at the V&A will be the first major UK exhibition to explore the exceptional talents of the Renaissance master, and will include many works that have never been on display in the UK before.

The exhibition will showcase Donatello’s early marble David and bronze Attis-Amorino from the Museo Nazionale del Bargello, Florence, as well as the reliquary bust of San Rossore from Pisa, and bronzes from Padua.

For the first time, the V&A’s exquisitely carved shallow relief of the Ascension with Christ giving the keys to St Peter will be displayed alongside the Madonna of the Clouds from the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and Desiderio da Settignano’s Panciatichi Madonna from the Museo Nazionale del Bargello, providing an exclusive opportunity to see these three works together.

Donatello, Ascension with Christ giving the keys to St Peter (c) Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Peta Motture, Exhibition Lead Curator of Donatello: Sculpting the Renaissance said: “Donatello was a driving force behind the Italian Renaissance and an inspiration to artists across the centuries. The exceptional opportunity to collaborate with our partners in Florence and Berlin, together with the generosity of all lenders, has made it possible for the V&A to present a remarkable insight into the artist’s training, relationships and legacy. Bringing together objects and narratives never seen before in the UK, the exhibition provides a unique moment to experience, enjoy and – for those less familiar with his work – discover Donatello’s astonishing talents and his wide-ranging impact on Renaissance and later art.”

The exhibition, Donatello: Sculpting the Renaissance opens at the V&A Museum next February, and tickets are on sale now from here.

Donatello, Lamentation over the Dead Christ, (c) Victoria and Albert Museum, London


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One comment
  1. ChrisC says:

    I saw this at the weekend in the Gemäldegalerie, Berlin and it’s an excellent exhibition with many stunning pieces

    One of the V&A pieces loaned was included in the Secrets of the Museum series on BBC2 as it was being cleaned by a conservator.

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