Facades of greatness in Florence

In Art and history by Roger Thomas

I have always had a particular love of works at miniature scale. So I took particular delight in examining a collection of models for facade treatments for Florence’s Duomo. The cathedral, known formally as Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiori, is topped by Brunelleschi’s famous dome, completed in 1436.

The models, now in the Museo Opera del Duomo, illustrate ideas and motifs from some of the most brilliant creative minds of the Renaissance and the Baroque. The facade we see today is a 19th-century Gothic revival. But it was already a building destined for greatness with any of these earlier concepts.

Go small and be amazed.