Also known as Galleria del Accademia, the Accademia Gallery is one of the best and most popular art museums in Florence, Italy. Founded in the year 1748, this art museum-cum-gallery is amongst the top places to discover the most magnificent art collections in all of Europe. The museum was initially built as a hands-on teaching school and was complete with an extensive collection of art and craft supplies. Today, the Accademia Gallery is one place where you can come across works of famed Italian artists like Bernado Daddi and Jacopo di Cione, in addition to some of the most notable artists of the world, such as Michelangelo and Giotto, among others. The Accademia Gallery Museum Halls are the most popular highlights of this museum, where you can come across some of the finest works of art from several hundred years of Italian history, including the statue of David as well as the painting of the Tree of Life.
One of the most popular Accademia Gallery Museum Halls is the Hall of the Colossus, which is aptly named after the wide array of age-old plaster casts that you can find here. Amongst the top attractions in this hall is the Rape of the Sabines sculpture by Giambologna, which is made out of a single block of marble and depicts three figures. Other popular attractions of the Hall of the Colossus include works by Filippino Lippi, Paolo Uccello, Domenico Ghirlandaio, Botticelli as well as Perugino, among others. The hall also consists of 6 exhibits of altarpieces from the 15th century.
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Named after the four slaves that used to reside here at one time is the Hall of the Prisoners, which consists of four male nude sculptures. All of these sculptures were created by Michelangelo, and are named the Awakening Slave, Atlas, the Young Slave, and the Bearded Slave. The sculptures were commissioned in the year 1505 and are older than the Sistine Chapel. This room was first built to house classic paintings, but then became the abode of these unfinished sculptures, which were intended to be a part of the tomb of Pope Julius II Della Rovere. You can also find several paintings in Accademia Gallery by Pontormo, Michele di Ridolfo del Ghirlandaio, Granacci, Fra’ Bartolomeo, and Andrea del Sarto in the Hall of the Prisoners.
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Undoubtedly the most popular of all Accademia Gallery Museum Halls is The Tribune, which is home to Michelangelo’s David, which is regarded as one of the most famous sculptures to have ever been made. Completed in the year 1504, this 17 feet tall sculpture was once located at Piazza Della Signoria and then moved inside a tribune (which later became a part of this gallery) in the 1850s. In The Tribune, you can also find works by other famous artists like Cecchino, Bronzino, Allori as well as Salviati, surrounding the sculpture of David.
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The Gipsoteca Bartolini Hall has been a part of this gallery since 1784 and has been dedicated to the life and works of one of the most genius artists of that era, Lorenzo Bartolini. It was in this year when the then Duke of Tuscany, Peter Leopold, converted the Friary Hospital of San Matthew and Convent into a museum for the students of the adjoining academy. Lorenzo Bartolini, who was one of the most prominent professors of the academy, then contributed a major chunk of Accademia Gallery artworks for this hall. It is here where you can discover some of the most important artworks that give you a glimpse into the evolution as well as the impact of Renaissance and Florentine art, right from times of New-Classicism and Romanticism.
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The Florentine Gothic is one of the last Accademia Gallery Museum Halls located on the ground floor, and has three rooms. These rooms are all dedicated to artists from the 13th to the early 14th centuries, such as the Giottesque painters, as well as Orcagna and his brothers. While the first room is home to the oldest works of art in the whole gallery, dating all the way back to the 13th century, the second room has Giotto’s works like Daddi and Gaddi. The final room boasts of works by four brothers, named Andrea, Nardo, Matteo, and Jacopo di Cione.
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Another one of the most famous rooms in the gallery is the Museum of Musical Instruments, which has a collection of more than 50 musical instruments which were once a part of the Medicean court and is known as the Grand Ducal Collection. This includes various wind, string as well as harpsichord instruments, in addition to early forms of piano, like the pianoforte, as well as the famed Viola by Stradivari. You can also find various other musical instruments which are used in the daily lives of the Medici family in this hall.
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Located on the first floor is the hall of Florence between 1370 and 1430, one of the most intriguing Accademia Gallery Museum Halls. It is in this hall where you can discover art before the Renaissance era, and discover a collection of late 14th-century artworks, including the late Gothic art of the Florentine era. You can also find a set of artworks dedicated to the local religious as well as spiritual practices during these eras in this hall. Some of the most prominent pieces here include Jacopo di Cione’s Massacre of the Innocents, in addition to works by artists like Del Biondo, Lorenzo Monaco, and Don Silvestro.
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