The Strength of Dutch Museum Collections: Piero di Cosimo

September 9 2020 to December 15 2020
Middle Ages

With the grateful support of the Rembrandt Association and the Turing Foundation, forty-five museums in the Netherlands are this year staging special presentations of artworks from their permanent collection that merit extra attention. As one of the participating museums, the Rijksmuseum has chosen to showcase two radiant portraits by Piero di Cosimo.

The Italian masterpieces by Piero di Cosimo are among the first to show people in the context of their profession – earlier portraits focused almost exclusively on saints or members of the nobility. Just as barbers were the vanguard of the medical profession, artisans were the forerunners of the professional architect and musician – the two occupations these two men represent. Can you sense their pride and confidence?

These radiant portraits from around 1482 of the Florentine architect Giuliano da Sangallo and his father are examples of painting from the Renaissance period, which saw people starting to examine their civilisation and themselves as human beings. Science and education became increasingly important in this time.

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Portraits of Giuliano and Francesco Giamberti da Sangallo, Piero di Cosimo, ca. 1482. Long-term loan from the Mauritshuis.

This presentation aims to draw attention to the rich abundance of the Rijksmuseum’s permanent collection and has come about with the support of the Rembrandt Association and the Turing Foundation