Florence in Two Pollaiuolo Paintings

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Two paintings by Antonio and Piero del Pollaiuolo, the Annunciation and the Hercules and Deianira, include a view of Florence in the background. Highlighting the brothers' innovative mode of representing the city and its surrounding countryside, this article examines the two different depictions of Florence, one religious and one secular. The paintings reflect contemporary conceptions of the city's two-fold image: Florence as the ideal city, recalling the New Jerusalem (the Annunciation), and Florence as the well-defended city, recalling Roman castra (the Hercules and Deianira). Shared features–the view of Florence and the metaphoric projection of the city as a beautiful woman–suggest that the paintings were commissioned by Lorenzo de' Medici, and that they were intended for the family villa at Careggi, built by his grandfather Cosimo.
Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to) 275-296, 391-394
Number of pages26
JournalAnnali della Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisa. Classe di Lettere e Filosofia
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2010


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