This unique exhibition presents a selection of fifty artists' self-portraits from the legendary collection of the world-famous Uffizi Gallery in Florence.
These remarkable works are usually housed in the Vasari Corridor, a kilometre of corridor linking the Palazzo Vecchio to the Palazzo Pitti. Access is notoriously difficult; this is therefore an incredibly rare opportunity to experience a slice ' never before seen in this country - of what must be one of the most remarkable sights in the art world.
Founded in the mid-seventeenth century by Cardinal Leopoldo de' Medici, he and a succession of Directors of the Uffizi built the collection to its present remarkable size ' some 1600 artists' self-portraits in all, covering six centuries of Western art.
The exhibition will bring the visitor face to face with Velazquez, Filippino Lippi, Gian Lorenzo Bernini, Guido Reni, Rembrandt, Angelika Kauffman, Giovanni Boldini, Frans van Mieris the Elder, Giacomo Balla, Carlo Carrá, Michelangelo Pistoletto, and Marc Chagall ' as they saw themselves.
As Zoffany reminds us in his own self-portrait (also on display here) ' Ars Longa Vita Brevis (Life is short; but art lasts). These great artists relied on their art to keep their reputations alive ' but, in our age of celebrity culture, it is an undeniably added bonus that, thanks to the Uffizi, we can also know what they looked like.
The exhibition at Dulwich has been put together by Arthemisia in collaboration with the Uffizi; it comes to Dulwich from the Palazzo Cavalli Franchetti in Venice.