- A special visit to the less-know Opificio delle Pietre Dure Museum
- A private licensed tour guide at disposal
- Michelangelo’s masterpieces
- The art of marbles and precious stones
Meeting with a private licensed tour guide for a monographic tour focused on the importance of a material used for lots of works of art, from architecture to sculpture and from jewelry to furniture craftsmanship.
The first stop will be at the octagonal Chapel of the Princes surmounted by a 59 meter high dome, at St. Laurence’s, built with the purpose of celebrating the Medici family, patrons of the church and Grand Dukes of Tuscany. The Grand Ducal Hardstone Workshop, the Opificio delle Pietre Dure, was established for the execution of its astonishing revetment of inlaid marbles with some others colored and with semi-precious stones. The art of commessi, as it was called in Florence, used to assemble jigsaw fragments of specimen stones to form the plans of the revetment that covered the whole walls.
Close to this impressive space, you will enter the intimate Medici Chapels in the Sagrestia Nuova (“New Sacristy”), which was designed by Michelangelo as a mausoleum or a mortuary chapel, where you will appreciate some of his masterpieces carved in white marble. After a short walk, you will visit a less-known museum next to the Opificio delle Pietre Dure, at present one of the most important and modern center specialized in restoration. Here you will see the artistic manufacture characterized by the working of hard stones, which was officially founded by the duke Ferdinando I de’ Medici in 1588. The precious collection includes specimens of great suggestion and refinement and allows you to outline a historical path of ancient marbles and the manufacturing of semi-precious stones over three centuries.