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MFA for Educators

Engage your students with the collections of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, to illustrate themes and concepts in any discipline.

From Donatello to Giambologna

This gallery is based on a 2007 exhibition, From Donatello to Giambologna. The objects exhibited were examples of a variety of types of art, encompassing a range of subjects for art. It features faience, a less familiar medium, as well as works in marble and bronze from Renaissance Florence. This gallery consists of sections on the importance of terra cotta, the science of museum conservation and the echoes of classicism bracketed between masterworks by Donatello and Giambologna.

Learning Goals

Exploring this gallery, you will discover:

• The art of faience, glazed clay objects called terra cotta (literally, cooked earth; terra= earth, cotta= cooked) (NSS G) (NVAS 4, 6)
• The role of science in art restoration (NSS E)
• The social values and beliefs of Renaissance Florence as shown in the decorative arts manufactured for public purchase (NSHT 2G, 3B, 3E)

This discovery will require students to:

• Look closely at objects and observe details
• Use prior knowledge in conjunction with observation
• Generate hypotheses based on observation and prior knowledge (NELAS 4, 12) (NSHT 3J, 5B)

Using this Resource

• Social Studies teachers and students will be interested in what this gallery reveals about Renaissance Florence.

• Art teachers and students will be interested in methods, materials, techniques, and the role of the artist in society.

• Science teachers and students will be interested in the use of scientific analysis in object conservation.

• World Language teachers and students will be interested in studying the culture that produced the Italian language

The objects in this tour are just a beginning. We encourage you to explore the Museum's online collection through this web resource—or even better, to visit the Museum and walk through the physical galleries—to look for other objects that will provide further insights into European history.

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