Leo X and Raphael in the Sistine Chapel
Leo X and Raphael in the Sistine Chapel

Leo X and Raphael in the Sistine Chapel

The tapestries of the Acts of the Apostles

Anna Maria De Strobel et al.
Edizioni Musei Vaticani
July 2020

In the “Anno Sanzio” 2020 the fifth centenary of Raphael’s death occurs, and the Vatican Museums celebrate this anniversary in an exclusive way by means of this imposing two-volume, elegant boxed work.

The long restoration of the tapestries, which has been going on for several years, required elaborate historical-artistic investigations and in-depth archival and scientific researches, carried out by art history and restoration specialists of the Vatican Museums, with the contributions of experts and scholars both from Italy and Europe.
Enriched by many color photos, images for comparison, graphical reconstructions and a large series of replicas and copies inspired by Raphael series, the publication extensively examines the tapestries of the “Scuola Vecchia” which depict scenes from the New Testament and are traditionally divided into stories of Peter and stories of Paul.

The first volume presents essays on the history of these fine textile artifacts, on the client, the execution technique, the scientific investigations and the restorations, as well as the regesto of the documents. The second volume, on the other hand, is a small box containing eleven booklets dedicated to each of the tapestries, with analytical and graphically enriched sheets aimed at restoring their original appearance, having also considered the relationship with Raphael’s cartoons preserved at Victoria and Albert Museum in London. Six folding tables are also included, presenting different hypotheses for the arrangement of the tapestries in the Sistine Chapel.