... knowledge matters... Exhibition: “Islamic Art and Florence from the Medici to the 20th century”; “Islam e Firenze. Arte e Collezionismo dai Medici al Novecento”. This sumptuous exhibition of Islamic art is curated by Giovanni Curatola and organised by the Uffizi in partnership with the Museo Nazionale del Bargello, the exhibition's other venue. It offers visitors a unique opportunity to discover the knowledge, exchange, dialogue and mutual influence that existed between the arts of East and West. It is the result of an international scholarly advisory board which has been working with dedication for two years to select the exhibits and to prepare the catalogue with essays rich in scientific and historical research, designed to illustrate the extremely important role that Florence played in interfaith and intercultural exchange between the 15th and the early 20th centuries, not to mention Florence's age-old interest in the Islamic world, which is apparent as early as in the diaries of Florentine merchants like Simone Sigoli, Leonardo Frescobaldi and Giorgio Gucci who travelled to the Holy Land in 1384 and also visited Cairo and Damascus, remarking in amazement on the sheer quantity and outstanding beauty of the items they saw. The exhibition is to be held in two venues. The section in the Bargello explores a crucial moment in the history of research, collecting and museography at the turn of the 19th century.
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