Uffizi revolution continues

Director Schmidt says will remain until end of 2019

(ANSA) - Florence, July 10 - Three of Leonardo da Vinci's greatest masterpieces, which were until this week housed in separate rooms at the Uffizi Gallery, are now on display together in a room dedicated exclusively to the Renaissance genius. The development is one of several revolutionary changes brought about by the gallery's director, German art historian Eike Schmidt.
    The three paintings - the recently restored Adoration of the Magi, The Annunciation, and The Baptism of Christ (which Leonardo painted together with Verrocchio) - are now housed in a room with walls colored in a soft, pearlescent grey tone, to bring out "the fullness of the forms that are so typical of Leonardo's style", Schmidt said at the inauguration of the new arrangement.
    This room of Leonardo's works completes a triptych highlighting the Uffizi's most important works, together with two other arrangements, one inaugurated in recent weeks and another at the beginning of the year.
    The most recently unveiled brought together Michelangelo's Doni Tondo with the masterworks of Raphael, while the one inaugurated earlier this year is an eight-room section dedicated to the works of Caravaggio, with the Medusa as its focal point.
    Schmidt said the next development will be the opening of rooms focusing on 16th-century Venetian artists, scheduled for the fall.
    It will include about 10 works by artists including Giorgione, Tintoretto, Tiziano, and Bernardo Licinio, as well as some masterpieces that have been in storage for decades.
    In October, Leonardo will once again be featured in celebrations for the 500th anniversary of his death.
    The Uffizi will open an exhibition showing the Codex Leicester, a collection of scientific writings by Da Vinci, on loan from Bill Gates.
    The exhibition brings the work back to Italy after 34 years.
    Schmidt said he plans to remain as director at least through the end of his first four-year term at the end of 2019.
    "I'm a Florentine citizen with German nationality; here in the gallery there is still a lot to do, and I will do it," he said.