July 2024

Renaissance masterpieces take centre stage at Art Gallery of South Australia’s new exhibition

Discover the vibrant era of the Renaissance at AGSA’s latest exhibition, featuring over 140 works from renowned artists.

Adelaide is gearing up to host a major exhibition that delves into the heart of the Renaissance period, one of the most transformative eras in European history. Reimagining the Renaissance, opening at the Art Gallery of South Australia on July 20, 2024, offers a fresh and captivating perspective on this iconic era, promising to transport visitors back in time to experience the magic and innovation that defined the Renaissance.

This extensive exhibition showcases over 140 significant works from the Renaissance, spanning various art forms like painting, sculpture, printmaking, and drawing. Sourced from AGSA’s impressive collection and complemented by exclusive private loans, the exhibit provides a broad and comprehensive overview of the artistic brilliance that flourished during this period in European history.

Visitors will have the unique opportunity to admire masterpieces by renowned artists such as Albrecht Dürer, Pieter Breughel II, Hans Holbein, and Benvenuto Tisi. The exhibition explores a wide range of themes, from religious symbolism and aristocratic portraiture to intricate objects of art and design, offering a multifaceted look at the creative expressions that emerged during the Renaissance.

Reimagining the Renaissance goes beyond the well-known Italian Renaissance, encompassing works from the Northern and English Renaissance, offering a more complete and nuanced view of the cultural resurgence that swept across Europe during the 15th and 16th centuries. This broader perspective highlights the interconnectedness of artistic movements across different regions and sheds light on the diverse cultural landscapes that shaped the Renaissance.

Tansy Curtin, the Senior Curator of International Art at AGSA and the curator of this captivating exhibit, explains that the exhibition is thoughtfully structured to delve into the profound changes in artistic and cultural ideas that defined the Renaissance. “Reimagining the Renaissance will challenge visitors’ perceptions of this pivotal period and show how art can influence and reflect historical change,” Curtin states.

The exhibition also highlights the meticulous conservation efforts that have preserved these priceless works, allowing their stories to be shared with contemporary audiences. Among the conserved pieces are two exquisite marble angels from 1480, which underwent extensive cleaning to reveal their intricate details and original beauty.

Notable works on display include a portrait of Henry VIII, believed to have been created during his lifetime, a significant print by Albrecht Dürer titled Knight, Death, and the Devil, and a unique silver-gilt standing salt from the esteemed Rothschild collection. Each of these pieces tells a story of artistic innovation, cultural exchange, and the enduring power of human creativity.

For those who want to dive deeper into the world of Renaissance art, the gallery will offer ticketed tours and drawing classes led by notable Adelaide artists and thinkers, suitable for all skill levels. These interactive experiences will provide visitors with the opportunity to engage more deeply with the art and explore their own creative potential.

Reimagining the Renaissance is set to be a must-see exhibition for anyone interested in art, history, and the enduring legacy of the Renaissance.

What: Reimagining the Renaissance Exhibition
Art Gallery of South Australia, North Terrace, Adelaide
When: 20 Jul 2024 – 13 Apr 2025
Price: Free entry

To learn more about the exhibition and book tours, visit the AGSA website: https://www.agsa.sa.gov.au/whats-on/exhibitions/reimagining-the-renaissance/

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