On Beautiful Grotesqueness
Domus Aurea
Estilo fantasía de la antigua Roma
I sogni dei pittori
Raphael: The Vatican Loggia
Palazzo Vecchio


- The Vasari Corridor. The building of the Uffizi ordered by Cosimo I (de' Medici) and supervised by Giorgio Vasari was commenced in 1560. The idea was to get the thirteen Guilds and Magistrates who administered the City under one roof or ... in closer proximity to Cosimo so he could control them better. As a collateral benefit the Medicis were to get the top floor for their art, theatre, etc. without paying anything.
At the same time Cosimo's wealthy wife, Eleanor of Toledo, had bought and was extending the Pitti Palace on the other side of the Arno. So, in 1565, well before the Uffizi had been completed, Vasari was also set to work building his "corridor" - a collection of linked galleries between the Palazzos Pitti and Vecchio which lent a new meaning to the phrase "journey to work" for Cosimo ... no more bodyguards or mixing with the masses, and plenty of opportunity to secretly spy on the activities of his subjects - a control freak's paradise! Cosimo even ordered the closure of the smelly butchers' shops then on the Ponte Vecchio (Paradoxplace).

- Ceiling painted with grotesques. It was Francesco I who decided to use the long loggia on the top floor of the Uffizi to set up a Gallery to house ancient statues and portraits of the Medici family and of illustrious men. Between 1579 and 1581 the ceilings of the Gallery were frescoed with grotesque motifs. This was a type of decoration which had spread at the end of the fifteenth century, being inspired by the Roman wall paintings discovered in the archaeological excavations, especially those in Nero's domus aurea. The work was begun by Antonio Tempesta and continued by Alessandro Allori, with the assistance of a group of collaborators that included Ludovico Buti, Giovanmaria Butteri, Giovanni Bizzelli and Alessandro Pieroni (Uffizi).

- Uffizi Ceilings, 1579-81. 46 Ceilings in the East Wing of the Uffizi painted by Antonio Tempesta and Alessandro Allori - after the style of rooms decorated by Fabullus in the palace of Emperor Nero, discovered in Rome in the 1480s and then thought to be "grottoes" (Paradoxplace).

- Stanzino delle Matematiche. Small room next to the Tribuna del Buontalenti in the Uffizi Gallery, where Grand Duke Ferdinand I de' Medici (1549-1609) had installed the collection of scientific instruments begun by his father Cosimo I (1519-1574). The Stanzino was intended to house the instruments, the treatises explaining how to use them, maps, city plans, and wooden models of war machines and fortifications. The ceiling was frescoed between 1599 and 1600 by Giulio Parigi (1571-1635), with a "grotesque" decoration in which many vignettes faithfully depicted a significant part of the collection and scenes of famous inventions, ancient and modern (Museo Galileo).

- N. Dacos, La découverte de la Domus Aurea et la formation des grotesques à la Renaissance, London, 1969
- Ewa Kuryluk, Salome and Judas in the Cave of Sex - The Grotesque: Origins, Iconography, Techniques, Northwestern UP, 1987
- Museo dei Ragazzi, Palazzo Vecchio
- Grotesque, Wikipedia
- Thierry Bézecourt, Grotesques, Bloc-notes, 2.10.2006
- Lynne Rutter, Grotesque Obsession, The Ornamentalist, 10.4.2008
- Grottesca, Decorative Painting Courses, Florence. The decorative style called "Grottesca (grotesque)" that characterizes many famous interiors in Florence and Rome. Grottesca (grotesque) decoration is a renaissance style which takes its name from the grottos, or archaeological digs, which took place in renaissance times. These excavations unearthed richly decorated antique Roman interiors, specifically the villa of Nerone, The Domus Aurea, excavated in Rome in 1480. The artists of the day were so taken by this lively and versatile decorative style that they incorporated it immediately in their commissioned works. Raphael decorated the Logge of the Vatican in this style and later in Florence, Vasari's workshop decorated the Palazzo Vecchio with Grottesca (grotesque) motifs. The style is infinitely adaptable and is fun for artists because it is fresh, colourful, and contains many unexpected amusing elements.


- Commons: Pompeian Painting Styles
- Commons: Roman Frescoes, Fourth Style
- Commons: Grotesque

Lynne Rutter
Katrin Monahan

- A novel form of target practice captured on one of the Grotesque ceilings decorating the East Corridor of the Uffizi Gallery (The Vasari Corridor, by Adrian Fletcher - Paradoxplace).

Addendum. Wikipedia: Grotesque and Grotesque body.

DEFINICION DE GROTESCO - Que por su deformidad, mal gusto o extravagancia produce reacciones muy distintas, como risa, burla o rechazo (El País).

“Lo Grutesco” seguido del extraño Manifiesto de las formas sin nombre hallado en el interior de unas grutas
-La forma en que se encontró la genealogía de Gargantúa en Gargantúa y Pantagruel de Francois Rabelais
-Genealogía jeroglífica e incomprensible
-El descubrimiento de la Domús Áurea del Palacio de Nerón
-Los extraños motivos ornamentales de los muros: Los Grutescos
-Fragmento: Los Grutescos de André Chastel SUMMA ARTIS Tomo XLVI
-Manifiesto de las formas sin nombre

The grotesque as structure and aesthetic category
10 Rijksmuseum Collections

Galleria degli Uffizi

Thierry Bézecourt : Ces plafonds sont une sorte d'encyclopédie visuelle du monde de la Renaissance.

Enlaces a visitar

Lucas Kilian, Newes Gradesca Büchlein, 1607

Piranesi. Grabado
Capricho grotesco: la tumba de Nerón, Opere varie | Prima parte di Architetture, e Prospettive, 1750.
La ruina final de todo acto humano.
“vanidad de vanidades, todo es vanidad”, del destino perecedero de cuanto existe.
Grotteschi, los grabados grotescos, son una ventana abierta a la imaginación. Involucran vestigios ruinosos, la vegetación que irrumpe, las calaveras, las serpientes, los faunos y piedras amontonadas de antiguos pueblos.
Piranesi es “eclecticismo y excéntrica vena creativa”
En código postmoderno lo suyo sería hipertextualidad, multidisciplinaridad, mash up, copy/paste... una ensalada en un sentido absolutamente positivo.

Jonathan Prown & Richard Miller, The Rococo, the Grotto, and the Philadelphia High Chest, Chipstone, 1996.

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