OK, we have just visited the new exhibition at the Palazzo Strozzi in Florence: "Springtime of the Renaissance: Sculpture and the Arts in Florence 1400-1460": GO SEE IT IF YOU POSSIBLY CAN ! Familiar as many of the works may be, if only through illustrations, they are all together overwhelming. Florence is of course the ideal place to see this exhibition, where one can also visit the Bargello national sculptures museum and so many of the locations for which the great sculptures of the early renaissance were made -- above all Orsanmichele and the cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore and its campanile. The exhibition will be at the Palazzo Strozzi until August 18 (friendly staff at the Palazzo Strozzi suggest visiting Mondays or Tuesdays for least crowds, but I have no doubt reserved times will fill up as news of the exhibition gets around). But you can see it later, as well, at the Louvre in Paris from 26 September to 6 January, 2014. As Michelin says about three-star restaurants, "vaut le voyage"!!
Well, that should be a good time to avoid crowds, so you can take advantage of that to visit the Uffizi and the Academia galleries in relative peace. But I am not sure you will find so many exhibitions on. The "Springtime of the Renaissance" exhibition was in 2013, but the Palazzo Strozzi will have a new exhibition opening March 8, 2014, on the painters Pontormo and Rosso Fiorentino. The best single source for many exhibitions (although not all of them) is the site "un anno ad arte" in Florence www.unannoadarte.it . Of course, Florence is full of marvellous sights and sites regardless of special exhibitions. For instance, aside from the major museums, seek out Orsanmichele, the museum of the Palazzo Davanzati, the museum of the former monastery of San Marco (sometimes called the Fra Angelico Museum), as well as major churches including the cathedral and separate baptistery, Santa Croce and Santa Maria Novella. Have a good time!
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