the progressing humanisation of the subject, enhanced by the expressive effects of
colour and light in the landscape around them.
Titian, Veronese & Tintoretto
The high-water mark of the Renaissance dawned in Venice in the 16th century
with an extraordinary confluence of talent in the persons of Tizian Vercelli (Ti-
tian), Paolo Veronese and Jacopo Tintoretto. While Rome was in decline and the
rest of Italy oppressed by moral mores that the licentious Venetians scoffed at,
Venice had both the deep pockets of the Doge and his stabilising iron rule. So
wealth, patronage and art flourished, with Titian as protagonist. Room IX brings
together some of the period's greatest works, including Titian's St Jerome and
Veronese's Cena in Casa di Simone (Supper in the House of Simon).
The Jesi Collection: 20th Century
Off room VIII is the Jesi Collection, donated in 1984. It includes the 12 sculptures
and 68 paintings of Emilio Jesi, acquired in the 1930s, '40s and '50s. A welcome
relief from the main gallery's religious pieces, these vibrant Futurist canvases in-
clude Boccioni's fabulous Rissa in Galleria (Riot in the Gallery) and Carlo Carrà's
La Musa Metafisica (Metaphysical Muse).
The Urbino School
One of the greatest painters of the early Renaissance, Piero della Francesca was
engaged by Urbino's Count of Montefeltro in 1474. Although the Tuscan artist and
mathematician is more famous for his cycle of frescoes depicting the Legend of the
True Cross in Arezzo's Basilica di San Francesco, the monumental Montefeltro al-
tarpiece, otherwise known as the Brera Madonna (1472-74), is the prize of room
XXIV. As a counterpoint, take a look at Raphael's much looser and more natural
Wedding of the Virgin, which was painted in 1504.
From the darkening palate and glimmering colours of the Baroque Emilian school
of the late 16th and early 17th centuries, you're barely prepared for the emotional
thump that room XXIX delivers. Home to the academy's only Caravaggio, Cena in