MASTERS, unknown Italian sculptors in the Florentine Grand Ducal workshops
(16th-18th centuries)

Ferdinando I de' Medici decided to compete with the art of painting through the semiprecious stone inlays in which the workshop founded by him in 1588 was specialized. This workshop proved to be capable of cutting the semiprecious stones along sinuous and complex contours, while still making the single pieces fit together so precisely as to make the joints between the various stones practically invisible. This technique permitted the Florentine masters to produce a vast repertory of images, ranging from portraiture to still-life, to scared scenes and landscapes.

The workshop not only developed the technique of inlaying semiprecious stones on flat surfaces, but also a new method which used the same material to realize relief and free-standing sculpture.

Preview Picture Data File Info Comment
Vase of Flowers
c. 1615
Hard stone inlay, 29 x 18 cm
Museo dell'Opificio delle Pietre Dure, Florence

650*952
True Color
113 Kb



Melchisedek and the Candelabra
1600-20
Hard stone inlay, 28 x 55 cm
Museo dell'Opificio delle Pietre Dure, Florence

1226*700
True Color
164 Kb



Vase of Flowers
c. 1650
Hard stone inlay relief, 24 x 19 cm
Museo dell'Opificio delle Pietre Dure, Florence

800*1015
True Color
106 Kb



Medici-Lorraine Coat-of-Arms
1590s
Polychrome marble inlay on white marble, 38 x 29 cm
Museo dell'Opificio delle Pietre Dure, Florence

800*1076
True Color
123 Kb



Sunflower
1664
Hard stone inlay, 32 x 20 cm
Museo dell'Opificio delle Pietre Dure, Florence

650*964
True Color
81 Kb



Tabletop
1650-1700
Commessi di pietre dure, gilt bronze, 64 x 108 cm
Liechtenstein Museum, Vienna

1522*900
True Color
182 Kb



Tile with Still-Life
1600-20
Hard stone inlay
Museo dell'Opificio delle Pietre Dure, Florence

615*1500
True Color
94 Kb



Landscape showing Jonah and the whale
1620s
Hard stone inlay
Museo dell'Opificio delle Pietre Dure, Florence

1309*600
True Color
159 Kb



Coat-of-Arms of the City of Florence
1620s
Polychrome marble inlay on white marble
San Lorenzo, Florence

949*1400
True Color
163 Kb



The Evangelists Matthew and Mark
c. 1605
Semiprecious stone inlay sculpture, height 32 cm (each)
Museo degli Argenti, Florence

1100*1115
True Color
113 Kb



Lorraine-Medici Coat-of Arms
18th century
Painted and gilt wood, 200 x 150 cm
Museo dell'Opificio delle Pietre Dure, Florence

900*1056
True Color
154 Kb



View of the Pantheon in Rome
1790s
Hard stone inlay, 32 x 20 cm
Museo dell'Opificio delle Pietre Dure, Florence

1300*946
True Color
211 Kb




Unknown Italian masters
Painters
11th-13th centuries | 14th century (1) | 14th century (2)
Frescoes in the Sancta Sanctorum (1270s)
Frescoes in the Eagle's Tower, Trent (c. 1400)
Frescoes in Santa Catarina, Galatina (1400s)
Frescoes in the Castello Challant, Issogne (1489-1502)
15th century | 16th century | 17th century
Sculptors
11th-14th centuries | 15th-18th centuries
Florentine Grand Ducal workshops