Friday, October 2, 2015

FLORENCE: UFFIZI GALLERY

The Uffizi Gallery is Florence's premiere art museum, holding works of most of the Italian Renaissance artists.  Unfortunately, because of a travel issue, my wife and I were not able to spend the time in the museum that we would have liked.  Even so, what we were able to see was impressive, to say the least.

The building, which dates from the 16th century, consists of long U-shaped, sculpture-lined corridors on two or three floors that surround a central courtyard, with galleries leading off from those corridors.  Here is a photo of one of those long corridors.


Personally, I found the overall presentation to be a bit drab and uninspired, compared with, say, the Musee d'Orsay in Paris, though I admit we were there to see the art, not the physical structure.

Much of the art that we saw during our abbreviated visit seemed to be religious art that predated the full flowering of the Renaissance.  Here are some examples that I shot.




I did particularly enjoy the following diptych consisting of portraits of the Duke and Duchess of Urbino, painted by Francesca, c. 1475.  I thought I detected just a touch of whimsy in the portraits (or perhaps it was in the subjects being painted).


I also liked this crucifix that was suspended in a glass case, in part because it allowed me to play with depth of field (shot at f4).


But it was two works by Botticelli that I was most interested in seeing, his Primavera (or Allegory of Spring) and The Birth of Venus.  For some reason, the Botticellis had been moved temporarily to a smaller gallery, which meant that that gallery was extremely crowded.  I simply was not able to get a full shot of the Primavera and had to content myself with images of a couple of details, a more mature Venus and the Three Graces.  Here is what I got.



Considering the lighting, the crowds, and the overall situation, I was very pleased with the quality of what I was able to get.  Here, for example, is a closeup of one of the Three Graces.


For the record, this was shot at f/4 for 125th second at an ISO of 1800.

I was able to get in front of The Birth of Venus.  Although I was somewhat off to the side, creating some perspective distortion, I was able to straighten out the image in post processing.  I was also able to brighten the shot some, as it was behind glass that was reducing color saturation.  Here is what I got.


And here is a closeup of Venus.


Again, a closeup of her face.


Gorgeous.  This was also shot at f/4 for 125th second, this time at ISO 1250.  The higher ISO didn't seem to have much degrading effect, as the texture of the canvas can be seen in the closeup of Venus's image.  Again, post processing helped.

John

1 comment:

  1. Keep the pictures coming. They are wonderful

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