A Symposium on Botticelli

Botticelli Devout People Of Jerusalem

Sandro Botticelli (Italian, Florence ca. 1445–1510 Florence). The Devout People of Jerusalem at the Gates (Design for a Pentecost) (detail), ca. 1500–1505. Pen and two hues of brown ink, brown wash, over black chalk, heightened with white, on paper, laid down, 9 1/8 × 14 3/8 in. (23.1 × 36.5 cm). Hessisches Landesmuseum Darmstadt

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Join us for a one-day international symposium and hear from scholars, curators, and academics on Sandro Botticelli’s art and design processes. This program will include an introduction to the exhibition Botticelli Drawings organized by exhibition curator Furio Rinaldi, curator of the Achenbach Foundation for Graphic Arts. It will also include original scholarship and presentations by Emanuele Lugli, assistant professor at Stanford University, Patricia L. Rubin, emeritus professor of Renaissance art at the Institute of Fine Arts in New York, Jacqueline Thallmann, curator at the Christ Church Picture Gallery in Oxford, and more.


1 – 2:30 pm

  • Thomas P. Campbell (FAMSF, director and CEO), Opening remarks
  • Furio Rinaldi (FAMSF, curator of the Achenbach Foundation for Graphic Arts), Introduction
  • Davide Gasparotto (J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles), How Much Do You Want a Botticelli?: Botticelli Comes to America
  • Jacqueline Thalmann (Christ Church Picture Gallery, Oxford), Botticelli and Filippino Lippi: The Underdrawing of the Christ Church Sibyl Panels Revealed

2:30 – 4 pm

  • Emanuele Lugli (Stanford University), Botticelli, Painter and Draftsman of Fabulous Hair
  • Michelle O’Malley (The Warburg Institute, London), Botticelli’s Hidden Drawings: Management and Production in the Workshop
  • Patricia Lee Rubin (Courtauld Institute, London), In the Company of Devils, Lost Souls, and Angels: Botticelli, Dante, and The Divine Comedy

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Botticelli Devout People Of Jerusalem

About the speakers

Furio Rinaldi is curator of drawings and prints at the Achenbach Foundation for Graphic Arts, the Fine Arts Museums’ department of works on paper. An expert on 15th- and 16th-century Italian drawings, particularly the schools of Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, and Michelangelo, he has published extensively on the subject in The Burlington Magazine, Master Drawings and The Metropolitan Museum of Art Journal. At FAMSF, he organized the Legion of Honor exhibition Color into Line: Pastel from the Renaissance to the Present (2021–2022). His curatorial experience includes positions in the department of drawings and prints at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, where he also served as a Samuel H. Kress Fellow, and the Pinacoteca di Brera, Milan. Rinaldi holds a PhD in art history from the University of Rome and an MA and BA in art history from the University of Milan.

Davide Gasparotto is senior curator of paintings, and chair, curatorial affairs at the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles since 2014. A native of Bassano del Grappa, Italy, he studied the history of art and classical archaeology at the University of Pisa and the Scuola Normale Superiore. He was the director of the Fondazione Piero della Francesca in Sansepolcro from 1996 to 1998. Afterward he spent 12 years as a curator at the National Gallery of Parma. From 2012 to 2014 he was director of the Galleria Estense in Modena. He was also a Francis A. Yates Fellow at the Warburg Institute, London (1999), Paul Mellon Visiting Senior Fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts at the National Gallery in Washington, D.C. (2007), and an Andrew W. Mellon Fellow at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (2011–2012).

Jacqueline Thalmann is an art historian and curator. Since 2003 she has been the curator of Christ Church Picture Gallery, Oxford. Before that she worked at Sir John Soane’s Museum in London and at the Census of Works of Art Known in the Renaissance at the Humboldt University in Berlin. Her extensive university education make her an alumna of LMU Munich, Bert Brecht University, Augsburg, the Courtauld Institute, London, and the Humboldt University, Berlin. Her research interests have focused on the perception of antiquity in Western art. Since coming to Oxford, they have circled around the objects in Christ Church’s European old masters’ collection, which she has presented through the Picture Gallery’s extensive exhibitions programme and through her teaching at Oxford University.

Emanuele Lugli is assistant professor at the department of art and art history at Stanford University where he teaches medieval and early modern art. Lugli researches the history of Italian culture and he is the author of four books, the latest being Knots, or the Violence of Desire in Renaissance Florence (University of Chicago Press, 2023). Beyond his academic pursuits, he contributes to various publications like Vanity Fair, Slate, and Vogue.

Michelle O’Malley is professor emerita in Renaissance art history at the University of London and the former deputy director of the Warburg Institute, London. She is the author of The Business of Art (Yale 2005), Painting under Pressure (Yale 2013) and articles on the economics and production of Italian Renaissance art and objects; she is a co-author of The Material Renaissance (Manchester 2007) and Re-Thinking Renaissance Objects: Design, Function and Meaning (Wiley-Blackwell 2010). From April to June this year she was the Scholar-in-Residence at the Istituto Universitario Olandesi di Storia dell’ Arte, in Florence, and in 2015/16 she held a fellowship at the National Humanities Centre, in North Carolina.

Patricia Lee Rubin is emeritus professor of Renaissance art at the Institute of Fine Arts in New York. She has served as director of that Institute, deputy director of the Courtauld Institute of Art, founding head of the Courtauld Institute Research Forum, and acting director of Villa I Tatti in Florence. Co-founder of the Graphic Arts Group in London, she has taught courses and published articles on the practice of drawing in the Renaissance. She has written books on Giorgio Vasari’s Lives of the Artists and on art and society in Renaissance Florence (Giorgio Vasari: Art and History and Images and Identity in 15th-century Florence), along with numerous essays and articles on related topics, including the co-authorship of the National Gallery exhibition catalogue Renaissance Florence: The Art of the 1470s.

Ticket info

Free program. Seating is limited and unassigned. Tickets are first come, first served, and distributed in front of Gunn Theater an hour before the program starts. This does not include admission to the exhibition. 

COVID-19 guidance

Masking is strongly recommended, but no longer required for members of the public or employees while in the museum.


This program is supported by the Italian Cultural Institute of San Francisco and under the auspices of the Italian Consulate General in San Francisco.

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