Apollo
Art Diary

The Raphael Cartoons

29 January 2021

While some museums are closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Apollo’s usual weekly pick of exhibitions will include shows at institutions that are currently open as well as digital projects providing virtual access to art and culture.

Acquired by Charles I in 1623, the seven surviving cartoons for the tapestries Raphael completed for the Sistine Chapel have since 1865 been on loan to the Victoria and Albert Museum. Last year – the 500th anniversary of the Italian master’s death – the V&A embarked on a refurbishment to its Raphael Court, with the aim of presenting these scenes from the lives of Saint Peter and Saint Paul in a better light than ever before. The renovated galleries will open when coronavirus restrictions in the UK are lifted; in the meantime (drawing on ultra-high-resolution photography of the works carried out by Factum Arte) the museum has released digital resources that enable visitors to see the monumental designs more closely than ever before, while also retracing the history of their creation. Explore the Raphael Cartoons at the V&A’s website.

Preview below | View Apollo’s Art Diary here

The Miraculous Draught of Fishes (1515–16), Raphael.

The Miraculous Draught of Fishes (1515–16), Raphael. Photo: © V&A; courtesy Royal Collection Trust/HM Queen Elizabeth II 2021

Detail from The Miraculous Draught of Fishes. Photo: © V&A; Courtesy Royal Collection Trust/HM Queen Elizabeth II 2021

Screenshot of the V&A’s interactive website, showing colour, 3D and infrared detail of the The Death of Ananias.

Screenshot of the V&A’s interactive website, showing colour, 3D and infrared detail of the The Death of Ananias. Photo: © V&A; Courtesy Royal Collection Trust/HM Queen Elizabeth II 2021

The Sacrifice at Lystra (1515–16), Raphael.

The Sacrifice at Lystra (1515–16), Raphael. Photo: © V&A; Courtesy Royal Collection Trust/HM Queen Elizabeth II 2021

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