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Museo di San Marco, Florence

Categories: Specialty Museums, Museums
Inspirock Rating:
4.6/5 based on 1,200+ reviews on the web
Don’t miss the frescoes of Museo di San Marco, noted for housing the largest collection of sacred art in the city. The museum is located in a former convent, which was home to two famous Dominicans during the 15th century, the painter Fra Angelico and the preacher Girolamo Savonarola. The museum now contains a major collection of works by Angelico, including some of his best-known panel paintings, commissioned by the Medici family. There are a number of smaller frescoes painted by Angelico and his assistants inside the monastic cells. The museum also exhibits works by several other artists, including Domenico Ghirlandaio, Alesso Baldovinetti, and Fra Bartolomeo.  Make Museo di San Marco part of your personalized Florence itinerary using our Florence trip itinerary maker.
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  • The building itself (like so many in Florence) is well worth going to see and photograph. However the frescoed interior is breathtakingly beautiful, including a stunning Last Supper from the late 1400...  read more »
  • I've returned many years later to review the Annunciation by Beato Angelico and works. It's always exciting.
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  • Exceptional place. Each cell has been decorated by Fra Angelico. The atmosphere is unique and peaceful. Much less invaded of tourists than other places / museums. A nice visit!
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  • Outstanding frescoes by Fra Angelico who slightly stood back from the tide of Humanism to create these paintings of which the Annunciation is different from his others and the "Madonna of the Shadows" is full of Christian iconography. Whilst Ghirlandaio "Last Supper" (he has done better ones) is the show stopper, the "St Dominic and his Friars Fed by Angels" in the Refectory by Giovanni Solignani has the unforgettable oh-so-natural donor's son glancing at the viewer from the right. San Marco was where Savonarola preached fire and brimstone and had his sparse cell at the end of the East Corridor and Cosimo the Elder(who paid for the refurbishment) had much grander quarters by the beautiful vaulted Library; somewhere to dive into and meditate when the Palazzo felt all to much for his tastes. The profile view of "Savonarola" by Fra Bartolomeo who was his contemporary, presents a much more nuanced, complex and driven man than the one-dimensional Mad Monk portrayed in history and guides everywhere. Go in the morning when the 2h queue for the nearby Accademia proves too disheartening. The sun flooding into the friars cells each painted differently and lighting up the Annunciation at the top of the stairs will stay with you long after memories of the David down the road has faded from all the advertising makeovers, tourist tat, and tattoo remorses.
  • This small scaled place is more interesting to visit than some popular and big ones in the city. It is unique in that it shows the dormitory cells of the monks.
  • Go there during the morning (9am), it is very fresh and a few amount of tourists. This makes the museum so calm and very relaxing. This museum is huge and full of surprises! Amazing work from Fra Bartholomeo. He spent his life painting, he was gifted! It is very easy to imagine the monk's life. You will first discover their room (there are a lot!!!!), the old library with books and tutorials on how to realize these books. At the end of the visit, a lot of sculptures from the old Firenze will surround you. I only put 4* because a lot of translation were missing from italian to (at least) english. But it was very cool. Something to do!
  • Who wants to discover Florence off the beaten path can visit one of several convents that the city houses. For example, when you enter the convent of San Marco, now a museum, a sense of contemplative calm overtakes you. The atmosphere calls for faith and understanding and the monastic cells are only decorated with a subtle but impressive fresco by Fra Angelico. Although in the middle of the busy city center you'll only encounter a few stray tourists. Just a stone's throw away there is another place of tranquility and beauty; the Chiostro dello Scalzo. A hidden gem in Florence! The simplicity of the frescos by Fra Angelo in the monastic cells make them even more sublime.
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