Room of Giovanni della Robbia, Museo Nazionale del Bargello, Firenze

Luca (1400-1482) was the head of the celebrated Della Robbia family of artists. He earned a position of the first rank in the art world of Quattrocento Florence, a period marked by a remarkable explosion of talent. His nephew Andrea (1435-1528) and Andrea’s son Giovanni (1469-1529) followed in his footsteps, and their collaborators included Benedetto (1461-1521) and Santi (1494-1576) Buglioni.
The family’s name is linked to the technique of glazed terracotta which Luca Della Robbia “invented” and then applied to the production of sculptures for churches and other buildings in Florence and all over Tuscany (from the Pazzi Chapel to the Sanctuary of La Verna). The most important museums in the Regione Toscana, from the Museo dell’Opera del Duomo to the Museo del Bargello, include examples of their work in their collections.
In his Libro di pitture Leonardo cites the technical virtuosity of this family of artists, who were able to “translate great paintings into terracotta covered with glass.”

Texts by
Alessandro Vezzosi, in collaboration with Agnese Sabato / English translation by Lisa Chien