Giovanna Garzoni at Palazzo Pitti

Painter and miniaturist (1660-1670), active in Venice, Naples, Turin, Rome and Florence at the court of Grand Duke Ferdinand II de' Medici, she composed refined miniatures on parchment with botanical subjects, with common or exotic plants and vegetables, resting on Chinese porcelain cups, many preserved in the Florentine collections of the Galleries. On the occasion of the exhibition, The Greatness of the Universe in the Art of Giovanna Garzoni, the great Paliotto Fiorito (over 4 metres) was presented, a prestigious example of Florentine textile art from the Museum of Santa Maria Novella which was originally intended for the altar of the basilica where it was placed in 1647. The embroidered canvas has been carefully restored by the textile section of the Opificio delle Pietre Dure. The technique used by the miniaturist consisted in combining brightly coloured silk fabrics with embroidered paper cut-outs, applied on a white and blue silk background, to create a highly evocative chromatic weave.

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