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Titian (Tiziano Vecellio), Christ and the Adulteress, ca. 1508–10. Oil on canvas. 54 13/16 x 71 1/2 in. (139.2 x 181.7 cm). Glasgow Museums; Bequeathed by Archibald McLellan, 1856 (181). ©CSG CIC Glasgow Museums Collection. Photo courtesy American Federation of Arts.

EDMONTON.- Of Heaven and Earth: 500 Years of Italian Painting from Glasgow Museums brings together 41 artworks by 35 different artists that vividly trace the achievements in Italian painting—from the religious works of the late-Middle Ages and Renaissance to the neo-classical secular and genre paintings of the 19th century. The exhibition is organized into five chronological sections corresponding to the different centuries—with each section represented by world-class paintings that reflect the stylistic accomplishments of the major creative centres in Italy: Bologna, Florence, Milan, Naples, Rome, Siena and Venice. 

“This exhibition is a rare chance for Albertans to see first-hand such a wide range of historical Italian masterworks,” says AGA Executive Director / Chief Curator, Catherine Crowston. “Some of these paintings haven’t been on public display for over a century. It is truly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.” 

Many of these artworks underwent restoration for this exhibition, so visitors will be able to experience the rich colours, delicate details and moving images these incredible paintings have to offer. Viewers will also be struck by the grandeur of these paintings—many are large in scale and in original 19th century gilt frames. 

Glasgow Museums has one of the finest and most comprehensive collections of Italian paintings in the UK. One of the most important works in the collection is Titian’s Christ and the Adulteress, which is included in this exhibition and is one of the artist’s few early works that can be seen outside of Italy. 

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Giovanni Bellini, Virgin and Child, ca. 1480–85. Tempera and oil on panel. 24 1/2 x 18 1/4 in. (62.3 x 46.2 cm). Glasgow Museums; Bequeathed by Mrs. John Graham-Gilbert, 1877 (575). ©CSG CIC Glasgow Museums Collection. Courtesy American Federation of Arts.

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Sandro Botticelli (and Possibly Assistant), The Annunciation, ca. 1490–95
Oil, tempera, and gold leaf on walnut panel. 19 1/2 x 24 7/16 in. (49.5 x 61.9 cm). Glasgow Museums; Bequeathed by Archibald McLellan, 1856 (174). ©CSG CIC Glasgow Museums Collection. Photo courtesy American Federation of Arts 

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Antonio Balestra, Justice and Peace Embracing, ca. 1700. Oil on canvas, 42 x 55 1/4 in. (106.8 x 140.3 cm). Bequeathed by Archibald McLellan, 1856 (266)© CSG CIC Glasgow Museums Collection. Photo courtesy American Federation of Arts.