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Medici Family: The Medici Families During The Italian Renaissance

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“Art mattered in the renaissance. Viewers expected works of art to be meaningful, purposeful, and functional, not just beautiful” (Paoletti and Radke 12). Visual imagery was so important and so complicated that artists very rarely worked alone. Artists frequently collaborated with one another and with a wide range of patrons. Art mattered because it was the product of an entire society. It both forged and reflected societal values. One of the most significant patrons during the Italian Renaissance was the Medici Family. The Medici family was a powerful and influential Florentine family during the 13th and 16th century. The Medici family had extreme control over Florence through political influence, bank and merchant trading operations and through…show more content…
Lorenzo the Magnificent, as he was known, practiced patronage of the arts in ways that are very similar to his grandfather. Lorenzo de Medici learned the importance of patronage from observing his grandfather and father. However, his patronage “alone would earn him a place of honor in the history of Italian art and letters. He freely contributed both his wealth and his influence, and the list of those who received his patronage includes the masters of the Renaissance in Florence” (Strum 16). Some of the artists Lorenzo patronized were the philosophers “Marsillio Ficino and Giovanni Pico della Mirandola, the painters Botticelli and Michelangelo, and the humanist poet Angelo Poliziano” (Encarta Encyclopedia 2000). Through his patronage of these artists and writers, Lorenzo helped the period of cultural rebirth known as the Renaissance to flourish in both Florence and…show more content…
Anna Maria is an extremely important member of the family, but is not well known. As the last member of the Medici family, Anna Maria Luisa saved her family’s art collections. Anna Maria Luisa “saved Florence from spoliation. With the so-called Family Pact of 1737, initiated and negotiated with astuteness and vision… the transfer of the Medici artistic heritage to the new ruler was effected” (Ciletti 25). This ensured that the Medici family’s art treasures would remain forever in Florence. All of the Medici collections are housed today in the Uffizi, Pitti, and Bargello Museums, the Laurenziana Library, the Palazzo Vecchio, and Archivio di Stato (Ciletti 25). Anna Maria Luisa assumed the role of the ‘official protector of her family’s heritage, which is to say, the greatest art collection in Europe” (Ciletti 25). Her actions were a major cultural event in the history of both Florence and 18th-century
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