Mar 20, 2018

The Gallery of Paintings of the Academy

Accademia di Belle Arti di Bologna

A journey through the spaces of the Academy of Fine Arts of Bologna where the collection of paintings is guarded.

Aula Magna
A prestigious venue for meetings and institutional events, the Aula Magna was originally the Church dedicated to Sant'Ignazio, part of the complex of the Jesuit Novitiate, today home to both the Academy and the National Gallery. Built in the Eighteenth Century by Alfonso Torreggiani, it unveils its original function in the dome, the columns and the two large altarpieces, inspired by the life of St. Ignatius of Loyola, placed above the "coretto". The space of the hall, emphasized by plaster casts of classical sculptures, hosts on the walls the paintings that refer directly to the history of the institution: the Fama, become today the institutional logo of the Academy and the Impresa of the Accademia Clementina.

Chosen as the institutional logo of the Academy of Fine Arts, it depicts the Allegory of Fame. The author was a well-known bolognese artist and vice prince of the Accademia Clementina.

The work is what remains of the ephemeral scenography realized for the funeral of Carlo Cignani, first prince of the Academy and Franceschini's own master. His portrait is embedded in the wind vane.

The composition contains the motto of the Accademia Clementina, founded in 1710 with the approval of Pope Clement XI, from who it takes its name.

It represents also the symbol that gather the instruments of the three arts: brush, compass and chisel.

The two altarpieces are the only works that date back to the religious period of the building. Both represent St. Ignatius, founder of the Jesuit order.

Esteemed Professor of the Academy, Antonio Muzzi well represents the development of history painting in Bologna at the end of the Nineteenth Century.

In the painting, Rome dresses the clothes of the popular Regina Margherita, inspirer of Umberto Carducci "Eternal Feminine Regale", embodying the ideology of Umbertine Italy.

Sala Clementina
This space is today the hall of Professors, where exams and meetings with students are held. Originally was probably the apse of the Church of Sant'Ignazio, as can be seen from the presence of the columns that suggest the ideal continuation of the Aula Magna. The Sala Clementina owes its name to the presence of the bust of Pope Clement XI. The walls of this room exhibit most of the paintings in the collection with a wide selection of portraits from the Seventeenth to the Twentieth Century, representing professors of the Academy or high-ranking personalities. Some of these artworks were donated by the artists awarded the title of Accademici d'Onore or by well-known personalities of the city. All these paintings is a visible witness of the italian and foreign personalities who took part in the history of the Academy.

The portrait of the engraver Rosaspina was realized in 1828, the year when the author, George Hayte, was nominated Accademico d'Onore thanks to the suggestion of Rosaspina himself.

This painting has a special meaning within the gallery, since the character depicted, Ettore Panzacchi, was the first professor of History and Art Criticism at the Academy, between 1872 and 1895.

Panzacchi was know also as writer and critic. He moved to the University of Bologna to teach Aesthetics and History of modern art while remaining Director and President at the Academy until his death.

The paintings by Daniel Duprè and Guy Head confirm the relationship with the European artistic world that has always been cultivated by the Accademia Clementina.

The paintings by Daniel Duprè and Guy Head confirm the relationship with the European artistic world that has always been cultivated by the Accademia Clementina.

Sala Curlandese
This room, adjacent to the Sala Clementina, is a place for institutional meetings. The name refers to the monument realized by Antonio Venturoli and Giacomo De Maria dedicated to the Baltic Prince Pietro Biron, Duke of Curlandia and Semigallia, nominated as Accademico d'Onore during his tour in Italy. In 1787 the duke decides to establish the Curlandese Prize, awarded until the middle of the last century, giving a thousand gold ducats. The award was added to the other existing ones: the Marsili - Aldrovandi and the Fiori. The annual prizes, awarded at the end of the year, were the most stimulating aspect of the academic life, especially for young students. This room collects twenty-four small monochrome canvases, winner of the Marsili Award for the section School of Figure between 1728 and 1803. These small paintings, all monochromatic and made with high pictorial quality, represent themes chosen by the commission, either mythological or historical. In the room there are also three watercolor drawings representing perspectives and scenographies, an example of the very high teaching of the School of Architecture.
Administrative Office
The wing of the Academy, where today the Administrative Offices are located, preserves some others paintings placed in the Directorate and the Presidency. Among these the two particular artwork Teschi accatastati and the unpublished little table Ritratto di Anna Beatrice d'Asburgo-Este dopo la morte. The wide corridor houses also the entire heritage of books from the historical library, rich in precious volumes including: the collection of prints of the roman antiquities by Giovan Battista Piranesi, the volumes of the Encyclopédie by Denis Diderot and Jean-Baptiste Le Rond d'Alambert and the main italian and foreign treatises of ornato, perspective and architecture - from Andrea Palladio to Vignola, Ottavio Scamozzi, Andrea Pozzo or Ferdinando Bibiena.

This painting has always been attributed to Ludovico Carracci and then to Barolomeo Cesi. Recent studies have questioned again the authorship of the artwork recognizing it to Bartolomeo Passarotti.

This unpublished little table by Adeodato Malatesta was the last portrait dedicated to the newly born Anna Beatrice of Habsburg, who died a month after her birth.

Accademia di Belle Arti di Bologna
Credits: Story

virtual exhibition by
Daniele Campagnoli
Maria Giovanna Battistini

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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