Giacobbe Giusti, Piero di Cosimo: SIMONETTA VESPUCCI

Giacobbe Giusti, Piero di Cosimo: SIMONETTA VESPUCCI

Piero di Cosimo - Portrait de femme dit de Simonetta Vespucci - Google Art Project.jpg

Portrait of a woman, said to be of Simonetta Vespucci (c. 1490) by Piero di Cosimo
Born 1453[1]
Genoa or Portovenere, Liguria, Italy
Died 26 April 1476(1476-04-26) (aged 22–23)[1]
Florence, Italy
Spouse(s) Marco Vespucci
Parent(s) Gaspare Cattaneo Della Volta and Cattocchia Spinola

Simonetta Vespucci (née Cattaneo; 1453 – 26 April 1476[1]), nicknamed la bella Simonetta, was an Italian noblewoman from Genoa, the wife of Marco Vespucci of Florence and the cousin-in-law of Amerigo Vespucci. According to her legend, before her death at 22 she was famous as the greatest beauty of her age in North Italy, and the model for many paintings (many not showing similar features at all) by Botticelli and other Florentine painters. Many art historians are infuriated by these attributions, which the Victorian critic John Ruskin is blamed for giving some respectability.[2]


Early life and marriage

She was born as Simonetta Cattaneo circa 1453 in a part of the Republic of Genoa that is now in the Italian region of Liguria. A more precise location for her birthplace is unknown: possibly the city of Genoa,[3] or perhaps either Portovenere or Fezzano.[4] The Florentine poet Politian wrote that her home was “in that stern Ligurian district up above the seacoast, where angry Neptune beats against the rocks … There, like Venus, she was born among the waves.”[5] Her father was a Genoese nobleman named Gaspare Cattaneo della Volta (a much-older relative of a sixteenth-century Doge of Genoa named Leonardo Cattaneo della Volta) and her mother was Gaspare’s wife, Cattocchia Spinola (another source names her parents slightly differently as Gaspare Cattaneo and Chateroccia di Marco Spinola.[6]

At age fifteen or sixteen she married Marco Vespucci, son of Piero, who was a distant cousin of the explorer and cartographer Amerigo Vespucci. They met in April 1469; she was with her parents at the church of San Torpete when she met Marco; the doge Piero il Fregoso and much of the Genoese nobility were present.

Marco had been sent to Genoa by his father, Piero, to study at the Banco di San Giorgio. Marco was accepted by Simonetta’s father, and he was very much in love with her, so the marriage was logical. Her parents also knew the marriage would be advantageous because Marco’s family was well connected in Florence, especially to the Medici family.


Simonetta and Marco were married in Florence. According to her legend, Simonetta was instantly popular at the Florentine court. The Medici brothers, Lorenzo and Giuliano took an instant liking toward her. Lorenzo permitted the Vespucci wedding to be held at the palazzo in Via Larga, and held the wedding reception at their lavish Villa di Careggi. Simonetta, upon arriving in Florence, was discovered by Sandro Botticelli and other prominent painters through the Vespucci family. Before long she had supposedly attracted the brothers Lorenzo and Giuliano of the ruling Medici family. Lorenzo was occupied with affairs of state, but his younger brother was free to pursue her.

At La Giostra (a jousting tournament) in 1475, held at the Piazza Santa Croce, Giuliano entered the lists bearing a banner on which was a picture of Simonetta as a helmeted Pallas Athene painted by Botticelli, beneath which was the French inscription La Sans Pareille, meaning “The unparalleled one”.[7] It is clear that Simonetta had a reputation as an exceptional beauty in Florence,[8] but the whole display should be considered within the conventions of courtly love; Simonetta was a married woman,[9] a member of a powerful family allied to the Medici,[10] and any actual affair would have been a huge political risk.

Giuliano won the tournament,[11] and Simonetta was nominated “The Queen of Beauty” at that event. It is unknown, and unlikely, that they actually became lovers.


Simonetta Vespucci died just one year later, presumably from tuberculosis,[12] on the night of 26–27 April 1476. She was twenty-two at the time of her death. She was carried through the city in an open coffin for all to admire her beauty, and there seems to have been some kind of posthumous popular cult in Florence.[13] Her husband remarried soon afterward, and Giuliano de Medici was assassinated in the Pazzi conspiracy in 1478, two years to the day after her death.

Botticelli finished painting The Birth of Venus around 1486, some ten years later. Some have claimed that Venus, in this painting, closely resembles Simonetta.[14] This claim, however, is dismissed as a “romantic myth” by Ernst Gombrich,[15] and “romantic nonsense” by historian Felipe Fernández-Armesto:

The vulgar assumption, for instance, that she was Botticelli’s model for all his famous beauties seems to be based on no better grounds than the feeling that the most beautiful woman of the day ought to have modelled for the most sensitive painter.[16]

Some, including Ruskin, suggest that Botticelli also had fallen in love with her, a view supported by his request to be buried in the Church of Ognissanti – the parish church of the Vespucci – in Florence. His wish was carried out when he died some 34 years later, in 1510. However this had been Botticelli’s parish church since he was baptized there, and he was buried with his family. The church contained works by him.

There are some connections between Simonetta and Botticelli. He painted the standard carried by Giuliano at the joust in 1475, which carried an image of Pallas Athene that was very probably modelled on her; so he does seem to have painted her once at least, though the image is now lost.[17] Botticelli’s main Medici patron, Giuliano’s younger cousin Lorenzo di Pierfrancesco de’ Medici, married Simonetta’s niece Semiramide in 1482, and it is often thought that his Primavera was painted as a wedding gift on this occasion.[18]

Possible depictions

Regarding each Portrait of a Woman pictured above that is credited to the workshop of Sandro Botticelli, Ronald Lightbown claims they were creations of Botticelli’s workshop that were likely neither drawn nor painted exclusively by Botticelli himself. Regarding these same two paintings he also claims “[Botticell’s work]shop…executed portraits of ninfe, or fair ladies…all probably fancy portraits of ideal beauties, rather than real ladies.”[20]

She may be depicted in the painting by Piero di Cosimo titled Portrait of a woman, said to be of Simonetta Vespucci that portrays a woman as Cleopatra with an asp around her neck and is alternatively titled by some individuals Portrait of Simonetta Vespucci. Yet how closely this resembles the living woman is uncertain, partly because if this is indeed a rendering of her form and spirit it is a posthumous portrait created about fourteen years after her death. Worth noting as well is the fact that Piero di Cosimo was only fourteen years old in the year of Vespucci’s death. The museum that currently houses this painting questions the very identity of its subject by titling it “Portrait of a woman, said to be of Simonetta Vespucci”, and stating that the inscription of her name at the bottom of the painting may have been added at a later date.[21]






Giacobbe Giusti, Villa Medicea La Petraia

Giacobbe Giusti, Villa Medicea La Petraia

Giacobbe Giusti, Villa Medicea La Petraia

Médaillon de Giusto Utens, Museo di Firenze com’era

Giacobbe Giusti, Villa Medicea La Petraia

Giacobbe Giusti, Villa Medicea La Petraia

Giacobbe Giusti, Villa Medicea La Petraia

Villa La Petraia gardens, Florence, Italy

Villa La Petraia gardens, Florence, Italy


La Villa Medicea La Petraia est une villa médicéenne qui se situe dans la zone collinaire du Castello, au 40 de la Via Petraia 40 à Florence.


En 1364, le palagio della Petraia appartenait à la famille Brunelleschi. En 1422, Palla Strozzi l’a acquis en lui ajoutant les terres adjacentes. Au XVIe siècle, la villa devint la propriété des Salutati, qui la vendent ensuite à Cosme Ier de Médicis qui, en 1544, la donne à son fils, le cardinal Ferdinand en 1568.

Les travaux d’embellissement de 1566 furent étendus par Ferdinand, devenu Grand-duc en 1587, qui le transforma en une résidence digne d’un Prince. En 1589, la villa est assignée à son épouse Christine de Lorraine pour ses noces. La villa passe sous l’apanage de Don Antonio de Médicis en 1609.

Sous la Maison de Savoie, elle devint la résidence du roi Victor Emmanuel II et de Rosa Vercellana, son épouse morganatique.

Depuis 1919, elle fait partie des biens de l’état.


Son jardin à l’italienne a été dessiné par Le Tribolo ainsi que sa Florence sortant des eaux sculptée par Jean de Bologne

Lieu de conservation

Dans ses dépôts est conservé la Sémiramis (1623-1625) de Matteo Rosselli, un des quatre tableaux consacrés à la vie des femmes célèbres qui décoraient la salle d’audience de la grande-duchesse Marie-Madeleine d’Autriche dans la Villa di Poggio Imperiale[1].

Giacobbe Giusti, BEATO ANGELICO: Crucifixion with Saints

Giacobbe  Giusti, BEATO ANGELICO: Crucifixion with Saints


Détail : groupe des quatre Marie.

Détail : médaillon du bas représentant Giovanni Dominici.

Détail : saint Thomas d’Aquin.

Détail : saint Benoît de Nursie.

Giacobbe Giusti, Last Judgment, Santa Maria in Piano, Loreto Apruntino

Giacobbe Giusti, Last Judgment, Santa Maria in Piano, Loreto Apruntino

Giacobbe Giusti, RUBENS: The Battle of Anghiari

Giacobbe Giusti, RUBENS: The Battle of Anghiari

The Battle of Anghiari (1505) is a lost painting by Leonardo da Vinci, at times referred to as “The Lost Leonardo”, which some commentators believe to be still hidden beneath one of the later frescoes in the Salone dei Cinquecento (Hall of the Five Hundred) in the Palazzo Vecchio, Florence. Its central scene depicted four men riding raging war horses engaged in a battle for possession of a standard, at the Battle of Anghiari in 1440.

Many preparatory studies by Leonardo still exist. The composition of the central section is best known through a drawing by Peter Paul Rubens in the Louvre, Paris. This work, dating from 1603 and known as The Battle of the Standard, was based on an engraving of 1553 by Lorenzo Zacchia, which was taken from the painting itself or possibly derived from a cartoon by Leonardo. Rubens succeeded in portraying the fury, the intense emotions and the sense of power that were presumably present in the original painting. Similarities have been noted between this Battle of Anghiari and the Hippopotamus Hunt painted by Rubens in 1616.

In March 2012, it was announced that a team led by Maurizio Seracini has found evidence that the painting still exists on a hidden inner wall behind a cavity, underneath a section of Vasari‘s fresco in the chamber.[1] The search was discontinued in September 2012, without any further progress having been made, due to conflict among the involved parties.[2]


Giacobbe Giusti,  The Battle of Anghiari History

Study of Two Warriors’ Heads for The Battle of Anghiari (c. 1504–5). Black chalk or charcoal, some traces of red chalk on paper, 19.1 × 18.8 cm. Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest

Giacobbe Giusti,  The Battle of Anghiari: A copy possibly made from the original incomplete work

In 1504 Leonardo da Vinci was given the commission by gonfaloniere Piero Soderini, a contract signed by Niccolò Machiavelli, to decorate the Hall of Five Hundred. At the same time his rival Michelangelo, who had just finished his David, was designated the opposite wall. This was the only time that Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo worked together on the same project. The painting of Michelangelo depicted an episode from the Battle of Cascina, when a group of bathing soldiers was surprised by the enemy. However Michelangelo did not stay in Florence long enough to complete the project. He was able to finish his cartoon, but only began the painting. He was invited back to Rome in 1505 by the newly appointed Pope Julius II and was commissioned to build the Pope’s tomb.

Leonardo da Vinci drew his large cartoon in the Basilica of Santa Maria Novella, on the east wall, depicting a scene from the life of Niccolò Piccinino, a condottiere in the service of duke Filippo Maria Visconti of Milan. He drew a scene of a violent clash of horses and a furious battle of men fighting for the flag in the Battle of Anghiari. Giorgio Vasari in his book Lives of the Most Excellent Painters, Sculptors, and Architects praised the magistral way Leonardo had put this scene on paper:

It would be impossible to express the inventiveness of Leonardo’s design for the soldiers’ uniforms, which he sketched in all their variety, or the crests of the helmets and other ornaments, not to mention the incredible skill he demonstrated in the shape and features of the horses, which Leonardo, better than any other master, created with their boldness, muscles and graceful beauty.

Giacobbe Giusti,  The Battle of Anghiari: Study of a Warrior’s Head for the Battle of Anghiari by Leonardo Da VINCI

Red chalk on very pale pink prepared paper, 22.6 × 18.6 cm. Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest

Leonardo built an ingenious scaffold in the Hall of Five Hundred that could be raised or folded in the manner of an accordion. This painting was to be his largest and most substantial work. Since he had a bad experience with fresco painting (The Last Supper; refectory of Santa Maria delle Grazie, Milan), he wanted to apply oil colours on the wall. He began also to experiment with such a thick undercoat (possibly mingled with wax), that after he applied the colours, the paint began to drip. Trying to dry the painting in a hurry and save whatever he could, he hung large charcoal braziers close to the painting. Only the lower part could be saved in an intact state, the upper part couldn’t dry fast enough and the colours intermingled. Leonardo then abandoned the project.[citation needed]

Michelangelo’s and Leonardo’s unfinished paintings adorned the same room together for almost a decade (1505–1512). The cartoon of Michelangelo’s painting was cut in pieces by Bartolommeo Bandinelli out of jealousy in 1512. The centerpiece of The Battle of Anghiari was greatly admired and numerous copies were made for decades.[citation needed]

Reconstruction of room

During the mid-16th century (1555–1572), the hall was enlarged and restructured by Vasari and his helpers, on the instructions of Grand Duke Cosimo I; in order that the Duke could hold court in this important chamber of the palace. In the course of the renovations, the remnants of famous (but unfinished) artworks from the previous plan of decoration for the hall, were lost; including The Battle of Cascina by Michelangelo and The Battle of Anghiari by Leonardo da Vinci.

Vasari himself painted new frescoes on the now-extended walls.On the walls are large and expansive frescoes that depict battles and military victories by Florence over Pisa and Siena :

  • The Taking of Siena
  • The Conquest of Porto Ercole
  • The Victory of Cosimo I at Marciano in Val di Chiana
  • Defeat of the Pisans at the Tower of San Vincenzo
  • Maximillian of Austria Attempts the Conquest of Leghorn
  • Pisa Attacked by the Florentine Troops


Giacobbe Giusti, Crucifix du Maestro di San Francesco (Louvre)

Giacobbe Giusti, Crucifix du Maestro di San Francesco (Louvre)

recommandations des projets correspondants.

Crucifix du Maestro di San Francesco (Louvre)
Master Of St Francis - Crucifix - WGA14504.jpg
peinture a tempera et or sur panneau de bois de peuplier
Dimensions (H × L)
96.5 × 73 cm
Musée du Louvre, Paris (France)
Numéro d’inventaire
RF 1981-48Voir et modifier les données sur Wikidata

Le Crucifix du Maestro di San Francesco (Louvre) est un crucifix peint à tempera et or sur panneau de bois de peuplier. Réalisé en 1260 environ il est attribué au Maestro di San Francesco, et conservé au musée du Louvre, à Paris depuis 1981.


Issu d’une collection privée (1880), vendu en 1972, puis transmis à la compagnie des prêtres de Saint-Sulpice (1978), il est acquis pour le musée du Louvre en 1981[1].


Le Christ est du type dolens, de la représentation humanisante franciscaine et dominicaine :

Le Christ se doit d’être alors représenté mort, souffrant sur la croix (et non plus triomphant ou résigné) :

  • La tête baissée sur l’épaule,
  • les yeux fermés soit absents, énucléés (orbites vides),
  • marques de douleur sur le visage,
  • la bouche est incurvée vers le bas,
  • les plaies sont saignantes (mains, pieds et flanc droit),
  • Le corps tordu déhanché, arqué dans un spasme de douleur, subissant son poids terrestre,
  • schématisation des muscles et des côtes.

Le crucifix ne comporte des scènes annexes qu’aux flancs du Christ :

  • à gauche : Marie en entier, accompagnée d’une femme,
  • à droite : Jean en entier, accompagné d’un apôtre,

En haut de la croix le titulus expose le texte de l’INRI en entier en or sur fond rouge, les extrémités de la croix des motifs géométriques.

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Giacobbe Giusti, PIETRO CAVALLINI: mosaics at the apse of Basilica di Santa Maria in Trastevere

Giacobbe Giusti, PIETRO CAVALLINI: mosaics at the apse of Basilica di Santa Maria in Trastevere


Giacobbe Giusti, PIETRO CAVALLINI: mosaics at the apse of Basilica di Santa Maria in Trastevere