The Florentine painter Sandro Botticelli (1445-1510) is celebrated as one of the most important painters of the Italian Renaissance. His paintings have been endlessly reproduced and interpreted. His motifs - widely borrowed and adapted - have gone out into the world, often at a considerable remove from the originals. Indeed, they can take us so far away from the actual paintings by Botticelli that the artist's name has come to stand for fashion and lifestyle, with no mention at all of his work. Products are named after him, displays of popular culture follow patterns established by him, and individual figures, chief among them his iconic Venus, have become part of the collective visual memory.
Botticelli's fame today was by no means a foregone conclusion. Quickly forgotten after his death, he was only rediscovered in the nineteenth century. The English Pre-Raphaelites and their admiration for Botticelli's work were instrumental in ushering in an extraordinary renaissance that went on to captivate the imagination of a growing circle of artists and, eventually, to enchant the public at large.
Since then, Botticelli's work has been interpreted in many different ways. Yet it continues to raise a multitude of questions. How does a painter acquire international fame? What made Botticelli a pop icon? Why are his works considered timeless? What is it that makes him so 'European' that his Venus appears on the obverse of a 10 cent euro coin? What we can safely say is that Botticelli, more than almost any other Old Master, inspired and continues to inspire modern and contemporary art.
The exhibition traces the fascinating history of these shifting appropriations and re-evaluations right up to the present and is the first to present the artist's work - a selection of more than fifty originals by Botticelli - in the context of these adaptations and interpretations in a wide range of media spanning painting, drawing, sculpture, photography, video, fashion and design. Among the 150 works on display are numerous masterpieces by artists such as Edgar Degas, Edward Burne-Jones, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, René Magritte, Andy Warhol, Cindy Sherman and Bill Viola on loan from the world's leading collections.
Made possible by the Sparkassen-Finanzgruppe, the LOTTO-Stiftung Berlin and the Kaiser Friedrich Museumsverein.
U-Bahn U2 (Potsdamer Platz)
S-Bahn S1, S2, S25 (Potsdamer Platz)
Bus M29 (Potsdamer Brücke); M41 (Potsdamer Platz Bhf / Voßstraße); M48, M85 (Kulturforum); 200 (Philharmonie)
Sun 11:00 - 18:00
Tue 10:00 - 18:00
Wed 10:00 - 18:00
Thu 10:00 - 20:00
Fri 10:00 - 18:00
Sat 11:00 - 18:00
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