The exhibition Memling. Rinascimento Fiammingo (Scuderie del Quirinale, Rome) sets out to provide the audience the opportunity, for the very first time in Italy, to gain an insight into the art of Hans Memling (circa 1435-1494). Hans Memling was the most important painter in Bruges between 1465 and 1494. The exhibition is curated by Till-Holger Borchert, chief curator of the Groeninge Museum in Bruges.
Doing justice to this artist's extraordinary talent, the exhibition will explore every aspect of Memling's career and work: from altarpieces to portable triptychs and devotional works, in addition to his famous portraits, a genre he perfected, portraying the sitter against a landscape backdrop - a style proven to be immensely popular. It had a major influence on numerous early 16th century Italian artists.
The exhibition will also focus on the aspect of patronage in the artist's career, highlighting in particular the importance of his Italian clients, who tended to be businessmen, court dignitaries and agents from Florence, Venice or Genova, but who had settled in Bruges. Memling, born in Germany, studied and worked with Rogier Van der Weyden in his Brussels' workshop, after which he opened his own flourishing workshop in Bruges.
Memling became the favourite painter of the Italian community in Bruges, outshining all others and benefiting immensely from the reputation of the earlier generation of Flemish painters, especially Jan Van Eyck and Rogier Van der Weyden. From the very start of his independent career as a panel painter, Memling managed to forge a synthesis of the remarkable achievements of both older masters, who were already held in the highest esteem by the Italian aristocracy and urban elites who had adopted them as benchmarks in the field of art.
The exhibition will host masterpieces of religious art like the monumental Moreel Triptych (Groeninge Museum, Bruges), and diptychs or triptychs brought together again for the first time. (e.g. the Pagagnotti Triptych; currently divided between the Galleria degli Uffizi in Florence and the National Gallery in London). The exhibition will also host a magnificent series of portraits including the Portrait of a Young Man from the Galleria dell'Accademia in Venice, the Portrait of a Man from the Royal Collection in London (an exceptional loan, courtesy of H. M. Queen Elizabeth II), a Portrait of a Woman from a private collection in the United States, the Portrait of a Man from the Frick Collection in New York, and the magnificent Man with a Roman Coin from the Royal Museum of Fine Arts in Antwerp (KMSKA).
Memling. Rinascimento Fiammingo
October 11 2014 - January 18 2015
Scuderie del Quirinale
Via XXIV Maggio 16, Rome
(News Item August 14 2014)