Italian Renaissance master Botticelli is well-known for his portrayal of female figures and mythical themes, and his works such as “The Birth of Venus” and “Primavera” are now among the main attractions of the Uffizi Gallery in Florence. In these works, the mythical Venus appears upon a verdant landscape to bathe in the gentle winds of spring, embodying the very ideal of grace and beauty that had enchanted viewers for the next 500 years. Botticelli’s own life was tightly intertwined with the rise and fall of the fortunes of Florence. He paved the way for the city state’s entry into the golden age of the Renaissance, and later on, his talents caught the attention of the papal court and he was invited to paint several frescoes in the Sistine chapel, which now sit alongside those of Michelangelo; Botticelli’s career trajectory testified to the gradual shift of the Italian Renaissance’s centre of gravity from Florence to Rome. The art of Botticelli came to influence many artists in the proceeding centuries. The 19th century pre-Raphaelites were much enamored with Botticelli’s refined style, and pop art master Andy Warhol did silkscreen reproductions of “The Birth of Venus”. More recently, Botticelli was the inspiration behind some of Dolce & Gabbana’s fashion collections, while Lady Gaga featured “The Birth of Venus” on one of her album covers. In the film INFERNO, adapted from Dan Brown’s novel of the same name, Botticelli’s painting, “Map of Hell”, served as the first in a series of clues that led to the discovery of a worldwide conspiracy.
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K11 Art House