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Uffizi to eat. The art of great chefs enlivens the museum’s masterpieces

With the magic of great chefs, the masterpieces of art history come out of the paintings and become appetising dishes to be enjoyed at the table.
This is what happens in ‘Uffizi to eat’, a new series of short films that the Florentine museum is about to launch on Facebook: every Sunday, from 17 January, the Galleries will post a video in which a famous chef or personage from the world of food and wine will choose a work from the collections and, inspired by the ingredients depicted (fruit, vegetables, meat, fish), will propose recipes to the public or cook dishes during the video itself. The aim of the series is to illustrate and explore the intimate bond that – especially through the intriguing genre of still life – has always united the art of painting with that of gastronomy.
With ‘Uffizi da mangiare’ it will be possible to see Fabio Picchi, owner of the Cibrèo in Florence and famous face of Tuscan cuisine on TV, confronting the ‘Boy with fish’ by the eighteenth-century Giacomo Ceruti; Dario Cecchini, butcher and restaurateur from Panzano in Chianti, already known for having brought verses from Dante’s Divine Comedy into the kitchen, will “serve” his version of the ‘Dispensa con botte, selvaggina, carni e vasellame’ by Jacopo Chimenti, known as L’Empoli, a 16th-century Florentine painter; Michelin-starred chef Valeria Piccini, of the Da Caino restaurant in Montemerano, Grosseto, will also propose her own recipe from a ‘Still Life’ by Empoli, while Marco Stabile, another Michelin-starred chef of L’ora d’Aria in Florence, will “challenge” on the table nothing less than Giorgio De Chirico’s ‘Peppers and Grapes’.

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Other episodes will follow, to tempt the virtual public of the Uffizi with a rich menu told based on colours and flavours, until late spring: the protagonists will be, in addition to a large group of chefs, works by Caravaggio, Felice Casorati, Giovanna Garzoni and other great artists.

In recent decades, the link between art and gastronomy has become a real science and the subject of serious historical research,” explains the director of the Uffizi Galleries, Eike Schmidt. “Our intention with these videos is to create an even closer link with the works in the museum, placing them in a current and vital context. Painted and cooked food thus meet on a plane of truth that stimulates the viewer’s attention and brings to the fore the profound and unexpected meanings hidden in the scenes and still lifes created by the painters”.


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