Friday, June 29, 2007

The Vasari Corridor

The Vasari Corridor

RAFFAELLO Sanzio (b. 1483, Urbino, d. 1520, Roma)
Self-Portrait 1506
Oil on wood, 45 x 33 cm
Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence

The Vasari Corridor runs from the Galleria degli Uffizi, over the Ponte Vecchio, and ends at the Palazzo Pitti. Built for the Medici by Giorgio Vasari in 1565, the corridor is rarely open to the general public and requires a special admission. It houses a collection of artists' (mainly self-)portraits ranging in date from the sixteenth to the twentieth century.

The Uffizi collection contains 1,400 self-portraits.

The self-portrait was a booming genre in the Renaissance. Vanity ? Attempt at immortality ? Excessive introspection ? Not enough money to hire a model ?

Reflections on the self portrait can be found in two articles: It's all about me, me, me . . . in The Daily Telegraph and Fabulous faces By Brian Sewell.

The exhibition 'Artists' Self Portraits from the Uffizi' referred to in the articles is at the Dulwich Picture Gallery, London SE21 (020 8693 5254), until July 15, 2007.