History and culture routes

Renaissance Modena

Modena - MO

During the Renaissance Modena flowered under the dominion of the d'Este family and was enriched with important works of art.
The process began with the refined marble doorways, the statues and the frescoes that decorate the Church and Monastery of S. Pietro. It forms part of the medieval Benedictine monastery, rebuilt in the early 16th century and which stands as the highest expression of Modenese Renaissance architecture.

At City Hall, which is still the Municipal Council headquarters, the great sixteenth-century artist of Modena origin, Nicolò dell'Abate, painted a masterful account of the history of Romanic Modena on the walls of the Sala del Fuoco (Fire Room), complete with battles, leaders, friezes and symbols of past glories.
His pictorial narration flows gracefully and with elegance.
Another important Renaissance building is the clock tower, with its elegant marble friezes and dome surmounted by a trumpet-playing angel.

The visitor is now ready to continue with the treasures kept at the Estense Gallery, which is one of the most important in Italy. In addition to numerous works by Nicolò dell'Abate, the gallery contains paintings by the most famous exponents of the Emilia and Ferrara schools of the sixteenth century and works by celebrated artists, from Tintoretto to Bernini, from Correggio to El Greco and Velazquez.
On the other hand all the materials collected in the Civic Art Museum are from the Modena area: paintings, ceramics, plaster casts, works in glass and precious fabrics, showing that the love beauty has strong, deep roots in Modena.
Following the streets of the historic centre one can see the elegant aristocratic residences that acquired a fresh appearance in the Renaissance period, a well-defined look that reflected changed needs. The aristocratic home abandoned its defensive function to become essentially a symbol of its owner's status.

These are a few examples: Palazzo (Palace of) Tacoli-Ronchetti, Ferrari Moreni, Sacerdoti, Palazzo Arcivescovile (the Archbishop's Palace), Fogliani, Ferrari, Seghizzi-Coccapani, Casa Luigini, Casa Colombi, Severi, Ghibellini, Tagliazucchi, Fontana, and Case Morane Begarelli in Modena
Antonio Begarelli (Modena, 1499-1565) was one of the most remarkable sculptors of the Italian Renaissance.
His works may be seen in many churches and museums in the city: Deposition (Church of San Francesco - 1531); Statue and altars at San Pietro (about 1520); Gesu in casa di Marta e Maria (Jesus at the home of Martha and Maria) (Church of San Domenico - 1546); Deposition (Church of Sant'Agostino - 1530); Madonna con bambino (Madonna and Child) ( Civic Museum - 1528) and Madonna del latte (Madonna of Milk) (Galleria Estense).