Arts | Original Renaissance works to debut in Macau this week

Francesco Salviati (1510–1563), Drapery Study for a Seated Woman. Courtesy of Trustees of the British Museum

joint exhibition presented by the Macao Museum of Art and the British Museum will bring the original drawings of 42 Renaissance artists to Macau starting Thursday, presenting works from renowned figures including Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo and Raphael. The exhibition will seek to highlight the achievements of Italian art during this period, according to organizers.

The exhibition is divided into six sections: “The Human Figure,” “Movement,” “Light,” “Costume and Drapery,” “The Natural World” and “Storytelling.” The sections combine to examine some of the themes that characterize Renaissance art, according to a statement from the Cultural Affairs Bureau, which oversees the Macao Museum of Art.

“Starting from the study of the human form, it explores how artists brought life and dynamism to their compositions through the study of movement, light and shade, and costume,” the Cultural Affairs Bureau wrote in its statement.

The exhibition is part of a series of activities being held to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the founding of the Macao Museum of Art.

As 2019 also marks the 500th anniversary of the passing of the great Renaissance master Leonardo da Vinci, the exhibition has been especially scheduled to open in April to coincide with the artist’s date of birth in April 1452. The artist died in May 1519, almost exactly 500 years ago.

On April 13, the Saturday after the exhibition unveiling, British Museum curator Sarah Vowles will hold a talk conducted in English for those interested in learning more about the works on display and the techniques used by the Renaissance artists.

A number of other exhibition activities have also been created by the Macao Museum of Art, including guided tours with the curator, hands-on tours to the 3D printing section of the exhibition, drawing workshops, courses, and special activities for children and the blind or visually-impaired.

The Department of Prints and Drawings at the British Museum is home to the national collection of Western prints and drawings. There are around 50,000 drawings and over two million prints dating from the beginning of the 15th century to present day. The collection is available to the public through a program of temporary displays, touring exhibitions and loans.

“Italian Renaissance Drawings from the British Museum” will be unveiled at the Macao Museum of Art at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday. Supported by the Faculty of Creative Industries of the University of Saint Joseph, as well as Jiangsu-based Suzhou Museum, the exhibition will run until June 30. DB

Giovanni Bellini (c. 1430–1516), Three Head Studies. Courtesy of Trustees of the British Museum

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