the last time i described the bargello i gave a quick tour of the ground and first floors before finishing on the davids. but it’s worth lingering on some other pieces. so let’s go back to their ground floor.


first, humanity and the divine.

whilst michelangelo sculpted ‘pitti tondo’ of the madonna and child (and saint john) with the aim to represent the very divinity of the characters, giovan francesco rustici would, in 1508-9, sculpt the very same characters under a completely different light. his madonna, child and saint john exude humanity and intimacy. the bargello has both pieces on each side of a pillar, allowing us to understand precisely just how radical rustici’s interpretation was:


here is michelangelo’s original

(quite sober)


and here is the one rustici did


oh, the humanity!

now the second piece i really enjoyed was the giant adam and eve sculpture. made in the mid-sixteenth century, it took almost a decade to finish (1542-51). and originally , it had a big stucco tree & base, both of which were destroyed in the great flood of 1966. now, adam and eve are safely in the bargello.


adam and eve

in front of a ground floor window which looks onto one of florence’s busiest streets

(you can imagine the view you have from the street looking in…)

and finally, a piece of florence fighting, and beating, pisa.


because it wouldn’t be a florentine museum without it.

il bargello

(see previous post too:








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