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The Baptistery of Florence gets a new look: the 1,200 square meters of mosaics in the dome are ready

FLORENCE - The restoration of the eight internal walls of the Florence Baptistery has been completed, which began in 2017 and was interrupted several times due to the Covid-19 pandemic, but it is not finished: the oldest monument in Florence will remain closed to the public until next December 18 to build, in safety, a special construction site that will allow the restoration of the approximately 1,200 square meters of mosaics in the dome.

This is a construction site, the cost of which is entirely borne by the Opera di Santa Maria del Fiore, and in the future it will also allow visitors to see a spectacle that is unique in the world up close.

The mosaics of the dome of the Baptistery were begun, according to the date inscribed in the scarsella, in 1225. In all likelihood they were made using mosaicists from outside and furnaces already active elsewhere, specialized in the preparation of polychrome glass for mosaic tiles.

Soon the Florentine painters and craftsmen were able to conquer full autonomy, and at the end of the century the over one thousand square meters of the dome were cloaked in the glittering mosaic dress, which on the sides of the grandiose scene of the Last Judgment narrates the Stories of Genesis on four registers, by Joseph the Jew, of Christ and the Baptist. Several generations of artists, including Cimabue himself, followed one another on the scaffolding to create a spectacular anthology of art, painting and mosaic together, of the Florentine thirteenth century, which also includes the vault of the scarsella, whose mosaics were made while still they worked on those of the dome.




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