The exhibition ‘Portable Classic’ explores the origins and functions of miniature reproductions of classical sculptures, showcasing more than 90 artworks. Both in ancient Rome and modern Europe a true ‘canon’ of sculptures was created, considered as an undisputed peak of excellence of a given subject. Their prestige was so high that, since it was almost impossible to acquire the originals, their reproductions, even on a small scale, were eagerly sought for by well-read audiences. An example of this is the Farnese Hercules, exhibited in a series of smaller-scale reproductions—measuring 20 to 150 cm—in marble, bronze and terracotta. Some classical small-scale masterpieces are presented along with Renaissance multiples, through the examples of the Ignudo della Paura and the Bathing Venus. Another section of the exhibition is devoted to important art collectors from the 1500’s. In a selection of paintings by Lorenzo Lotto, Tintoretto and Bernardino Licinio, the subjects are portrayed among classical sculptures and plaster casts from their personal collections. Starting from the emblematic cases of the Belvedere Torso and the Laocoön, the exhibition illustrates how Renaissance artists employed small-scale copies to elaborate hypotheses on the missing portions of the classical originals.
Peggy Guggenheim Collection | Venice
Palazzo Venier dei Leoni, Dorsoduro 701 / +390412405411 / guggenheim-venice.it Mon 10am to 6pm, Wed - Sun 10am to 6pm
The Peggy Guggenheim Collection is among the most important museums in Italy for European and American art.