After visiting the Brera Art Gallery three times, I’ve finally decided to write a series of posts dedicated to its collections. Why three times? Well, the first time was about 2 years ago and I didn’t pay much attention to the artworks but the big names. What’s more, the famous “The Kiss” by Francesco Hayez was on loan at that time. I visit it the second time at the beginning of 2018 but unfortunately, several rooms were closed due to restoration works and I couldn’t see most of the works by the Venetian School masters including the famous “St. Mark Preaching in Alexandria” by Gentile and Giovanni Bellini and “Finding of the body of St. Mark” by Tintoretto. A few months later, after learning about the reopening of those rooms, I paid a third visit to the gallery and now I believe I’ve seen pretty much of it. In the consecutive three posts, I’ll first of all give you a brief introduction to the Pinacoteca di Brera itself and then, I will provide you with some practical information such as the opening hours, tickets prices and how to explore the collections. The main body of the three posts is composed of some information about and my thoughts of the “masterpieces“. As in many other art galleries or museums of fine arts, there are masterpieces recommended by the museums and there are masterpieces of your own. It’s impossible to learn about all the paintings in a few visits and I suggest you take your time and find the paintings that touch you and make you wanna stay and take a closer look. Now let’s see what is Brera.
The Pinacoteca di Brera was founded on the site of a convent and in 1572, it was passed to the Jesuits. From 1627 to 1628, it was largely rebuilt by the architect Francesco Maria Richini. Nowadays, the gallery shares the palace with the Academy of Fine Arts, the Istituto Lombardo Accademia di Scienze e Lettere (an Italian academy founded by Napoleon in 1797), the city’s oldest observatory, and the Braidense National Library, founded by Empress Maria Theresa of Austria to house several of the city’s leading cultural institutes when the Jesuits were disbanded in 1773. Besides the gallery, the academy and the library, I recommend you paying a visit to the botanical garden as well. Founded by Maria Theresa of Austria in 1775, it is now recognized as a museum institution. In fact, the gallery is closely connected to the garden. Why? At the ticket desk you can obtain a brochure called “Art and botanical walk between the pinacoteca and the botanical garden of Brera” and in it you will find the same plants painted on the artworks and planted in the garden. A unique walk between art and nature will help you discover the relationship between culture and nature, between us and our environment. If you are interested, I’ll give you a more detailed introduction to the library and the garden at the end of the third post.
The first collection of the picture gallery already existed in 1776 and it was founded by Maria Theresa of Austria for the students of the Academy of Fine Arts. Later, the gallery benefitted from numerous confiscations made by Napoleon during his conquest of northern Italy in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. In Brera, you can see two huge statues depicting Napoleon as Mars the Peacemaker, one in bronze standing in the middle of the main courtyard and the other one in plaster standing in the room dedicated to 16th-century Venetian painting. Both of them are casts of the original one, which was made in white marble and gilded bronze by the Italian artist Antonio Canova. It shows Napoleon I of France in the guise of the Roman god Mars with a gilded Nike or Victory standing on an orb in his right hand and a staff in his left. The two statues of Napoleon I are not here by accident. They mark the significant role he played in the establishment of Brera because it was him who inaugurated the pinacoteca on 15th August 1809.
Now, I’ll talk about how to explore the gallery’s collections. First of all, for information about the opening hours of the gallery please click here and for information about the ticket prices please click here. Please note:
- every third Thursday evening of the month from 18:00 to 22:15 (ticket office closure 21:40), you can visit the pinacoteca for 3 euros and enjoy live music at the same time
- admission is free every first Sunday of the month
- audio guide is available in Italian, English, French, Spanish and German and the rental fee is 5 euros
- as of 1st March, everyone who buys a ticket will be offered a temporary membership card and to receive it, please ask the staff at the ticket office. With this card you can visit the gallery for free for the next 3 months.
- for more information about free admission or reduced-price tickets please click here
- for more information about Brera’s masterpieces recommended by the official website please click here.
It is said that Napoleon intended to make the pinacoteca the “Louvre of Italy” and therefore, a large number of religious paintings and altarpieces from Lombardy, Veneto, Emilia and Marche can be seen here. Throughout the centuries, each region has developed their own visual language. The 38 rooms are organized as a journey in time, beginning at the 13th century while in space, they are arranged according to various schools such as the Venetian School, the Parma School, the Ferrara School etc. In my opinion, as long as there’s no large-scale restoration work, it’s rather easy to orient yourself in the museum. The key is the map which you can see on the wall at the entrance or obtain from the info desk. If you are familiar with the different schools and their leading artists, I’m sure it will just be a piece of cake to guide yourself.
As I said above, it’s impossible to see and learn about every painting in the gallery in just a few visits so I recommend you picking up some works which are particularly interesting to you. A good start would be to check out the masterpieces recommended by Brera’s scholars and experts. One thing I love about this gallery is that there are brief introductions to almost all the works and they are written both in Italian and English on the black boards in front of the paintings. In front of the particularly important paintings, you can also read comments on the white boards written by renowned historians, artists and sometimes simply art lovers. This information gave me the opportunity to actually learn about the works that made me curious or touched me the most, or in other words, it helped me discover the masterpieces of my own.
Now I’ll share with you what I learnt during my three visits by showing and explaining to you the masterpieces in my mind (not necessarily in chronological order). The information I’m gonna provide will mostly be based on what I read from the info boards on site and from the official website of Pinacoteca di Brera. I hope after reading this and the next two posts, you will have a deeper understanding of Italian painting and grow your interest in Italian art and culture.
“Marriage of the Virgin” by Raphael
This painting is undoubtedly one of the most important and precious ones in this gallery as it’s the most sophisticated of Raphael’s early works. In 1501, Filippo Albizzini was granted the patronage of a chapel in the church of San Francesco in Città Castello and he publicly vowed to beautify it. It is unclear whether the task was commissioned to Raphael directly or to Raphael’s teacher Pietro Perugino first, whose absence then resulted in Raphael doing the job. In any case, this masterpiece was finished by Raphael in 1504, which is indicated by the inscription on the middle of the temple. As you can see in the 3rd picture above, the work is signed Raphael Urbinas and dated 1504.
At that point, Raphael was at his early 20s and still under the influence of his teacher Pietro Perugino. If you make a comparison between this painting and the paintings by Pietro Perugino, particularly his “Marriage of the Virgin” now conserved in Musée des Beaux-Arts, Caen, you can easily notice the similarities in their composition structure and iconography. Both Raphael’s and Perugino’s paintings applied the image perspective system, recommended by Piero della Francesca in his De prospectiva pingendi (On the Perspective of Painting). It is an approximate representation, generally on a flat surface, of an image as it is seen by the eye. To be more precise, both paintings applied the “one point perspective“, which is a drawing method that shows how things appear to get smaller as they get further away, converging towards a single “vanishing point” on the horizon line. This method makes the objects look three-dimensional and realistic. In fact, it was also used by da Vinci in his fresco “The Last Supper”. Can you find the “vanishing point” of Raphael’s “Marriage of the Virgin”? As you can see in the 1st picture above, it’s the doorway of the temple. I wouldn’t say this painting is merely a copy of his teacher’s because Raphael perfected it and made a turning point of his career. As commented on the official website of Brera, in Raphael’s work, “all elements are connected to each other by mathematical relations of proportion and placed according to a clear, logical hierarchical order, while Perugino had only juxtaposed the composition elements within a correct perspective structure. The realisation of this coherent organism perfectly demonstrate Raphael’s vision. He intended beauty as an abstract order of geometrical representation and thought that artists had the duty of making things not as Nature makes them, but as Nature should.” In addition, the 16th-century Italian artist and art biographer Giorgio Vasari said that in this piece “may be distinctly seen the progress of excellence of Raphael’s style, which becomes much more subtle and refined, and surpasses the manner of Pietro.” He continued that “in this work, there is a temple drawn in perspective with such evident care that it is marvellous to behold the difficulty of the problems which he has there set himself to solve.” Actually, the architecture has been painted with such precision that scholars have speculated the existence of a wooden model.
Having talked about the techniques, let’s come back to the content of the painting. It depicts Virgin Mary’s marriage to St. Joseph, a story told in a medieval book called “The Golden Legend“. As you might have known, in the Bible, a lot of stories are missing and people in the Middle Ages created the “glue”, “The Golden Legend”, to tie the biblical stories together. As narrated in the book, there were a lot of people wanting to marry Mary and each of them had a rod. It is said Mary should marry the man whose rod blossoms and it was Joseph, whose rod did (as you can see in the painting). They came to the temple and as you can see in the 2nd picture above, St. Joseph is tenderly putting a ring on Mary’s finger. Instead of a simple narrative, this painting is more like a “performance“. Can you see the crowds both on the right and left? The people are moving and focusing on here and there. What do their poses and facial expressions mean? Anger? Disappointment? Jealousy? Happiness? The man who’s breaking his rod certainly doesn’t feel happy. In contrast to his teacher’s works, Raphael demonstrated in this painting indications of the features of the High Renaissance, that is to say, ideal beauty, harmony and perfection. Recently, I’ve become a huge fan of Raphael because of his typical “Raphael Sweetness“. As shown in the paintings such as “La Belle Jardinière” in the Louvre, “Madonna of the Goldfinch” in the Uffizi Gallery, “Tempi Madonna” in the Alte Pinakothek in Munich and so on, the sweetness can also be seen in Mary in this painting in Brera. Standing elegantly and smiling tenderly, she tilts her head down and looks at the ring. Compared with his teacher’s works, Raphael added a more subtle and refined touch to his own.
In general, the composition of the painting is symmetrical. For example, the priest in the middle with Virgin Mary and St. Joseph on each side, the five girls on the left and five suitors on the right, the pavement leading to the temple and of course, the temple itself. Why does the priest tip his head a little bit to be off center? My guess is that Raphael wanted to avoid the stiffness of the 15th-centruy painting, or in other words, painting of the Early Renaissance, and create the movements which are both natural and elegant.
Above, I mentioned a few times that the one-point perspective is quite visible in the painting. As we look up, the figures get smaller and the pavements and steps get narrower, which indicate distance. Where do our eyes focus? Eventually, on the doorway of the temple. If you take a close look, you will realize that we can actually see another doorway on the other end of the temple and the mountain and sky beyond. Both the figures and the architecture in the painting seem to coexist in ideal harmony and perfection, thus creating in front of us a heavenly world, as shown through the doorways of the temple. If you’ve been to Rome, does this temple remind you of the Tempietto (small temple) built by Donato Bramante? As a masterpiece of High Renaissance Italian architecture, the small but harmonious commemorative tomb (martyrium) is said to have been built on the spot where St. Peter was crucified.
If you are interested and wanna know more about this painting, I recommend you a video from khanacademy.org, which is both academic and easy to understand.
“The Kiss” by Francesco Hayez
Francesco Hayez was an Italian painter, renowned for his grand historical paintings, political allegories and exceptionally fine portraits. Accidentally, I attended two temporary exhibitions about him and his works, one of which was in Gallerie d’Italia in Milan and the other one was in Gallerie dell’Accademia in Venice. Those were two great opportunities to see his major works and learn about his personal as well as academic life. As the leading artist of Romanticism in mid-19th-century Milan, his most renowned painting is probably “The Kiss“, as you can see in the first two pictures above. Commissioned by Alfonso Maria Visconti di Saliceto, it was donated to the Pinacoteca di Brera after his death in 1886.
Why is “The Kiss” so famous in Italy and even around the world? In general, it’s because it conveys the main features of Italian Romanticism and has come to represent the spirit of the Risorgimento, the political and social movement that consolidated different states of the Italian peninsula into the single state of the Kingdom of Italy in the 19th century. The painting represents a couple from the Middle Ages, embracing and kissing each other. The girl leans backwards while the man bends his left leg so as to support her. His left foot naturally falls on the step next to him, which also seems to indicate that he needs to go at any moment. The couple’s faces are not recognizable, so the focus of the audience would be on the action of kissing instead of the identities of the man and the woman. As you can see in the middle painting in the 3rd picture above, on the left corner of the canvas, some shadowy form seems to be walking towards them, which gives us an impression of danger and conspiracy.
On the superficial level, the painting depicts a passionate kiss, which according to Wikipedia, “is among the most passionate and intense representations of a kiss in the history of western art.” It emphasizes deep feelings rather than rational thought and presents to us a different Middle Ages in a patriotic and sentimental tone. All the features are in accordance with the principles of Romanticism. On a deeper level, the painting portrays the spirit of the Risorgimento (Resurgence), or the Italian unification, which began in 1815 with the Congress of Vienna and was completed in 1871 when Rome became the capital of the Kingdom of Italy. This spirit is characterized by romanticism, nationalism and patriotism, which dominated the cultural, political and social movement of that time that promoted unification. The girl’s blue dress symbolizes France, which in 1859 (when the painting was created) made an alliance with the Kingdom of Piedmont and Sardinia, making it possible for the latter to unify many states of the Italian peninsula into the new Kingdom of Italy.
Having talked a lot about the background of the painting, let’s now look at it from the aesthetic point of view. Particularly eye-catching in the painting is the girl’s blue dress, which shimmers in front of its viewers. The color and texture were so well executed that we can feel it’s made from fine silk. Personally, I love the shadowy figure on the left of the canvas. It contrasts with the major part of the painting, which is bright, peaceful and happy and shows us that danger is inevitable and everywhere. It’s the same case in out daily life. These hidden threats may seem small and weak but they could do large damage to our beautiful world. Nevertheless, in the painting I can see Hayez’s confidence in the discovery and defeat of them.
If you are wondering why there are three “The Kiss” in the 3rd picture above, it’s because Hayez painted other versions of the one in Brera and now they are in various European collections. I feel really lucky to have had the rare opportunity to see all of them in one room in a temporary exhibition.
Just a reminder. In the last room of your visit in Brera Art Gallery, where “The Kiss” is exhibited, you can see many other works by Hayez including portraits and still life painting such as “Pietro Rossi”, “Portrait of the Borri Stampa Family”, “Melancholy“, “Portrait of Alessandro Manzoni”, “Bathsheba at her bath”, “Self-portrait at 57”, “Portrait of Teresa Manzoni Stampa Borri”, and “A Vase of Flowers on the Window of a Harem”. If you wanna know more about them, please click here.
“Lamentation of Christ” by Andrea Mantegna
The most convincing hypothesis identifies the painting in Brera with the “Foreshortened Christ” found in Mantegna’s studio at the time of his death, sold by his son Ludovico to Cardinal Sigismondo Gonzaga and inventoried among the property of the lords of Mantua in 1627. After a complicated series of changes of ownership, in 1806, the secretary of the Accademia di Brera Giuseppe Bossi asked the sculptor Antonio Canova to act as a go-between in the purchase of his “sought-after Mantegna,” which finally made its way into the Pinacoteca in 1824.
Mantegna’s son called this painting the “Foreshortened Christ” and in art history, this kind of depiction of Christ is indeed unusual. Actually, the technique of foreshortening in painting is not strange at all as many Renaissance masters used it to create an illusion of space and depth. Here, Mantegna applied this technique to draw us into the scene, as if we were the witnesses of Christ’s death and were by his side. After being taken down form the cross, he is placed on the stone and his body is ready to be anointed, shrouded and placed in the tomb. This painting is one of many examples of the artist’s mastery of perspective. At first glance, it seems to display an exact perspective, but if you take a closer look, you will probably notice that Mantegna deliberately reduced the size of the feet, as he knew that otherwise they would block much of the body. As we look at the painting, our sight goes from the feet to the head and we can see the suffering of Christ reflected by the eyebrows pressed together. Different from the medieval conception of the dead Christ, who is totally detached from human pain, in this painting, he is depicted as a human instead of the God. This change reveals to us the the humanity of Jesus and makes us contemplate his sacrifice and redemption.
Another notable feature in this painting is the demonstration of realism. The wounds on the feet and hands are almost of clinical accuracy and you can even see the dried skin and its sharp edges. On the upper left corner, we can see a mourning group. Clearly Mary is weeping over the death of her son but unusually she is depicted here as an old woman. On Mary’s right we can see St. John the Evangelist but who’s the mysterious person on her left? Is he or she just a random figure that Montagna added to this painting? On the upper right corner we can spot a jar next to Jesus on the slab. It is very likely the jar of ointment that Mary Magdalene used to anoint Jesus’ feet. In this case, this evidence leads us to believe that the third figure of the mourning group is Mary Magdalene.
As I mentioned in the first paragraph, this painting was found at Mantegna’s workshop upon his death, so we are not sure whether it’s because this work was rejected by the patron who commissioned it or he actually painted it for his own use. However, what we do know is that, as commented on the official website of Brera, “it is an absolute peak in Mantegna’s production, a work whose expressive force, severe composure and masterly handling of the illusion of perspective have made it one of the best-known symbols of the Italian Renaissance.”
“Pietà” by Giovanni Bellini
This panel, dated to the years between 1465 and 1470, marks an evident emancipation of Giovanni Bellini from the influence of Andrea Mantegna, to whom he was linked not only by cultural affinities but also by close ties of kinship (Andrea Mantegna was Giovanni Bellini’s brother-in-law). As commented on the official website of Brera, “the lesson of the Paduan artist is clearly visible in the incisiveness of the outlines and the sculptural plasticity of the figures, brought into the foreground to invade the space of the observer. Yet Bellini immerses the scene in an atmosphere of natural light, softening the tones and concentrating not so much on the construction of a rigorous perspective as on conveying the sorrowful humanity of the protagonists.” Originally belonging to the Sampieri collection in Bologna, this painting entered its present home in 1811 as a gift to the Kingdom of Italy by Eugene de Beauharnais, stepson and adopted child of Napoleon I who commanded the Army of Italy and was Viceroy of Italy under his stepfather.
In Giovanni Bellini’s “Pietà”, Mary and John the Evangelist support the lifeless body of Christ, which was just taken down from the cross. The whole scene is soaked in sorrow, from the grey sky to the color contrast in Mary’s and John’s warm hands and Jesus’ cold body. Mary holds Jesus in the same tenderness as she once held him as a baby but her look is totally different from the moment when she watched him sleeping sound. She knows Jesus is not just sleeping but gone. Nevertheless, she still looks at him closely, hoping that miracle would happen and he could wake up. In Bellini’s depiction, we can easily see the physical resemblance of Mary and Jesus, the eyes, the noses and the mouths. John is looking away groaning, indicating an unbearable pain watching the destined separation between the mother and son.
This is another early work by Giovanni Bellini, executed between 1460 and 1465. It is named after the Greek monograms at top left and top right, both of which are unfortunately badly preserved. As I learnt from Wikipedia, the original background had been a blue sky, which could be seen on either side of the central curtain. The curtain remains, but the sky was hidden in the 16th century by two gold stripes. Infrared examination during the restoration also revealed the panel’s preparation with glue and plaster and the chiaroscuro underdrawing, both typical of Bellini. When the French invaded Venice in the late 18th century, the painting was in the Doge’s Palace. Confiscated and assigned to the Pinacoteca di Brera in 1808, it is among the gallery’s first collection.
In this paining, both Mary and the Christ Child are looking aside sadly. What are they looking at? Probably their destined future and inevitable separation? The golden apple in Christ’s hand is most likely an indication of his future Passion.
“Madonna and Child” by Giovanni Bellini
Different from the other two paintings that I introduced to you above, this painting is among Giovanni Bellini’s last works. He completed it when he was 80 years old, 6 years before his death. At the lower left corner, the stone bears his Latin signature and the work’s finishing date (1510) (IOANNES BELLINUS MDX). Can you notice the difference between this painting and the other two? In my eyes, his skillful use of sumptuous colors has certainly reached the mature stage, probably long time ago. During Albrecht Dürer’s visit to Venice, he called Giovanni Bellini “still the best in painting“. How did the founder and master painter of the Venetian School remain the best for so many years? The key is probably that he kept responding to new developments in painting. As commented on the info board on site, “that Giovanni Bellini, in his eighties, is able to renew his practice based on the experience of younger artists, is one of the most extraordinary moments in art history.”
Giovanni Bellini was not only a great painter himself but also a great teacher who, to a large extent influenced many Italian painters, including two of his most renowned pupils, Titian, the most important member of the 16th-century Venetian School, and Giorgione, known for the elusive poetic quality of his work. In this “Madonna and Child”, the landscape in the background actually draws on Giorgione’s innovations in landscape, the use of aerial perspective in the blue haze over the mountains. It is indeed amazing that Bellini, at his 80s, still learnt from his student and applied what he found with great potential to his own works.
“St. Stephen’s Disputation with the Elders of the Sanhedrin” by Vittore Carpaccio
The canvas was part of a narrative cycle depicting Scenes from the Life of St. Stephen executed for the Venetian seat of the confraternity dedicated to the saint, which was dispersed in 1806 following the Napoleonic abolitions. The confraternity, also known as the Scuola di Santo Stefano, was made up of members of the Wool Guild and at the very beginning held its meetings and services in the sacristy of the church of Santo Stefano. In 1476 the Scuola obtained permission from the friars of the nearby monastery to construct a chapel of their own and, in 1506, to decorate it as they wished. Between 1510 and 1520, Carpaccio painted canvases as decorations for the rooms, including the one now in Brera.
The theme chosen in this painting is applied to an exotic setting that allowed the artist to let his imagination run free and produce creative works of architecture and unusual oriental costumes. On the other hand, a solid realism characterizes the representation of the figures in the foreground, where the three doctors wearing turbans are mixed up with numerous portraits of members of the confraternity. What’s also worth noting is the impressive handling of perspective, which can be seen from the portico in the foreground and the foreshortening of the books set on the steps.
What’s the peasant doing in the foreground next the column? Walking unbothered along the step, it has a privileged view of what’s happening inside the open gallery. The narrative power of Carpaccio’s painting is another point that we should focus on here. Stephen looks us, which is the artist’s way of catching our, the viewers’ attention. The painting can not speak, but the gestures of the characters tell us what is going on. Rather obviously, St. Stephen is counting out his arguments. What about the people who are listening? Do they agree or disagree? I guess now it’s your opportunity to create a dialogue among the audience.
“Marriage of the Virgin” by Vittore Carpaccio
The theme depicted here is the same as the one in Raphael’s painting, which I introduced to you at the beginning of this post. As you can see, the other suitors are breaking their rods as Maris chooses the eldest suitor, St. Joseph, whose rod miraculously blossoms. I’m sure you can find a lot of differences between Carpaccio’s and Raphael’s paintings but the difference which caught my attention immediately was the setting. Probably because Vittore Carpaccio was born and lived in Venice, his setting clearly reminds me of the pearl on the sea. You can’t see any water in the painting? Well, if you have been to Venice, did you visit the Church of Santa Maria dei Miracoli? I visited more than 16 churches on the island and the “Marble Church” surely left me a deep impression. As you can see in the third picture above, the marble buildings in the painting instantly brought my memory back of this church. Another curious object in this painting is the carefully-drawn seven-branched menorah, an ancient Hebrew lampstand made of pure gold and used in the portable sanctuary set up by Moses in the wilderness and later in the Temple in Jerusalem. Why does it appear in this painting? As I read form the info board, Carpaccio was trying to depict the contemporary Venice, with its large and active Jewish population.
“Presentation of the Virgin in the Temple” by Vittore Carpaccio
I add this painting here to give you a comparison between the master’s works of various qualities. Carpaccio has a huge output but the quality varies depending on the commission fees. For example, the painting shown in this section was commissioned by the Scuola dei Albanesi, who probably had less money to pay than the others. The comparatively low quality can be seen in the portraits, where the characters are more genetic. They were probably completed by the staff of the master’s workshop rather than the master’s own hands. Interestingly, they often include some lovely details such as the domesticated gazelle and the rabbit as you can see in the 2nd picture above.
“St. Sebastian” by Liberale da Verona
The panel, which was executed around 1490 for the church of San Domenico in Ancona, has an unusual iconography that sets the martyrdom of the saint, represented in the traditional way bound to a tree and pierced by arrows, against the backdrop of Venice. How do we know it’s Venice? The shape of the chimneys and the presence of some gondolas testify to this statement. There are also refined details such as a young man holding a falcon on the bottom left and women watching the martyrdom from the arcade and balconies on the bottom right. As I learnt from the official website of Brera, “the background reflects a passion for narrative on the part of the artist, who had worked as an illuminator in Central Italy and developed an intense interest in lively descriptions and forthright and expressionistic graphic solutions.” Below St. Sebastian, we can see a bow and a quiver, which were left by his murderers. However, by looking at the face of this saint, we don’t seem to sense any form of pain or suffering.
By now, I have introduced to you some of the masterpieces in the first rooms of the gallery (except “The Kiss”) and in the next post, I’ll focus on works by the leading painters of the Venetian School including Gentile Bellini, Giovanni Bellini, Titian, Veronese, Tintoretto and so on. If you are interested in Leonardo da Vinci, although there are no works by him here, I’ll give you a brief introduction to some works by his pupils and admirers. At the end, I’ll take you to have a look at the masters belonging to the Parma School and School of Ferrara and some of their important works. Please note, “St. Mark Preaching in a Square of Alexandria in Egypt” by Gentile Bellini and Giovanni Bellini as well as “The Finding of the Body of St. Mark” by Tintoretto (Jacopo Robusti) are absolutely two highlights.