History

Situated between Piazza Strozzi and via Tornabuoni in the heart of Florence, the Palazzo Strozzi is one of the finest examples of Renaissance domestic architecture.It was commissioned by the Florentine merchant Filippo Strozzi and the foundations were laid in 1489 according to a design by Benedetto da Maiano.  A year later the project was given to Simone del Pollaiolo, known as Cronaca, who worked on it until 1504 but the Palazzo was only finally finished in 1538. The Palazzo remained the property of the Strozzi family until 1937, and since 1999 it has been managed City of Florence.

Since the Second World War the Palazzo has been Florence’s largest temporary exhibition space. Among the major exhibitions held at Palazzo Strozzi have been the Peggy Guggenheim Collection (1949), 17th century Florence (1986),  Gustav Klimt (1992), La Natura Morta Italiana (2003), Botticelli e Filippino Lippi (Italy’s most visited exhibition in 2004), Leon Battista Alberti (2006) and Cézanne in Florence (Italy’s most visited exhibition in 2007).

The City of Florence, The Florence Provincial Authority, the Florence Chamber of Commerce and an Association of private-sector partners joined together in April 2006 to set up a public-cum-private company to manage and promote Palazzo Strozzi. The Board of Directors is chaired now by  Matteo Del Fante, CEO of Terna S.p.A.

Since July 2006, the Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi has successfully devised and implemented a rich and innovative programme of exhibitions, events and activities in the various areas of the Palazzo such as the Piano Nobile, the Strozzina and the Courtyard.

In the implementation of this programme of exhibitions, events and activities, the board adopts guidelines furnished by an Advisory Council comprising experts from some of the world’s leading institutions, including the Louvre and the Beyeler Foundation.  The Council’s Director General is Dr. Arturo Galansino.

The Palazzo Strozzi now hosts three major exhibitions annually, and is open year-round with a café/bar, and a permanent exhibition on the history of the Palazzo Strozzi. In November 2007 the spaces under the courtyard were re-opened as the Centre for Contemporary Culture Strozzina (CCCS) and will host a wide variety of activities including exhibitions, events, lectures and programmes designed to appeal to a broad spectrum of users of all ages, nationalities and backgrounds.

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The challenge facing the Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi from the outset has been to bring international quality exhibition and cultural events to Florence and Tuscany and to “give the Palazzo back to the city and the region.”

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