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Revealing the Early Renaissance: Stories and Secrets in Florentine Art opens this weekend at the AGO

Exhibition brings rare 14th-century masterpieces to Canada for first time

TORONTO—Presenting rare Florentine masterpieces that have never before been shown in Canada, Revealing the Early Renaissance: Stories and Secrets in Florentine Art opens at the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) this weekend, on March 16, 2013. Tickets are now on sale at for this once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Revealing the Early Renaissance: Stories and Secrets in Florentine Art is a large-scale exhibition that brings together an unrivalled collection of more than 90 paintings, manuscripts, sculptures and stained glass from the 14th century, many of which have never travelled before. The exhibition is presented in partnership with the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles, where it was on view from November, 2012 to February, 2013.

“I am proud the Ontario government continues its support for the AGO by assisting them in bringing exciting exhibitions like this one to the people of Ontario,” said Michael Chan, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport. “Exhibitions like Revealing the Early Renaissance remind us of a historical period that has influenced the world we live in today, and it also enhances Ontario’s reputation as a world-class tourism and culture destination.”

Careful installation of the rarely-seen works is well underway. “The exhibition space is set up to tell an intriguing story as you walk through it,” said Sasha Suda, the AGO’s assistant curator of European art. “Bringing these works together offers an unprecedented opportunity to learn about the practices of artists at this crucial time in history, and uncover new information that has lain dormant for centuries.”

“We are delighted to play a role in bringing light to these remarkable works,” said Tony Gagliano, Executive Chairman and CEO of St. Joseph Communications, sponsor of the exhibition. “These artists were the very first Renaissance men. They changed art forever, leaving a legacy that should be enjoyed by all.”

Timed-entry tickets are now on sale. Regular-priced tickets range from $16.50 for youth visitors to $25 for adults. Admission is FREE for AGO members and for children ages five and under. Tickets can be booked online by visiting

A wide range of programming and events create a full exhibition experience for visitors who attend Revealing the Early Renaissance: Stories and Secrets in Florentine Art. The line-up includes a free musical performance on April 6, 2013 by one of America's leading ensembles in vocal chamber music, Lionheart. Acclaimed for its "smoothly blended and impeccably balanced sound" (New York Times), the ensemble will perform a program of songs from the illuminated pages of the Laudario of Sant’Agnese. Lionheart transcribed the music from this manuscript, whose pages will be brought together for the first time in modern history to be put on view for Revealing the Early Renaissance: Stories and Secrets in Florentine Art. For a full description and a list of events and programs please visit

On March 23, 2013, the AGO will assemble leading international experts — curators, art historians, scientists and conservators — for a public symposium. The event will explore how art, history and science come together to give a fresh understanding of the artists who gave birth to the Renaissance. Discussion topics include new conservation research and scientific analyses that shed light on artists’ techniques and workshop practices of the times. For a list of speakers and to purchase tickets, please visit

Revealing the Early Renaissance: Stories and Secrets in Florentine Art is co-organized by the J. Paul Getty Museum and the Art Gallery of Ontario.

SPONSOR: St. Joseph Communications

INDIVIDUAL SUPPORTERS: The AGO is grateful for the generous support of Cecily & Robert Bradshaw, Nance Gelber & Daniel Bjarnason, Michael & Sonja Koerner, Tim & Frances Price and Elizabeth Tory.

OFFICIAL HOTEL PARTNERS: Sheraton Centre Hotel and Westin Harbour Castle

GOVERNMENT PARTNER: Government of Ontario

The exhibition is supported by the Department of Canadian Heritage through the Canada Travelling Exhibitions Indemnification Program / Avec l’appui du ministère du Patrimoine canadien par le biais du Programme d’Indemnisation pour les exposition itinérants au Canada.

With a collection of more than 80,000 works of art, the Art Gallery of Ontario is among the most distinguished art museums in North America. From the vast body of Group of Seven and signature Canadian works to the African art gallery, from the cutting-edge contemporary art to Peter Paul Rubens’ masterpiece The Massacre of The Innocents, the AGO offers an incredible art experience with each visit. In 2002 Ken Thomson’s generous gift of 2,000 remarkable works of Canadian and European art inspired Transformation AGO, an innovative architectural expansion by world-renowned architect Frank Gehry that in 2008 resulted in one of the most critically acclaimed architectural achievements in North America. Highlights include Galleria Italia, a gleaming showcase of wood and glass running the length of an entire city block, and the often-photographed spiral staircase, beckoning visitors to explore. The AGO has an active membership program offering great value, and the AGO’s Weston Family Learning Centre offers engaging art and creative programs for children, families, youth and adults.

Visit to find out more about upcoming special exhibitions, to learn about eating and shopping at the AGO, to register for programs and to buy tickets or memberships.
March 16 – June 16, 2013: Revealing the Early Renaissance: Stories and Secrets in Florentine Art

Aug. 17 – Oct. 27, 2013: Ai Weiwei: According to What?

Nov. 30, 2013 – March 2, 2014: The Great Upheaval: Modern Masterpieces from the Guggenheim Collection

The AGO is funded in part by the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport. Additional operating support is received from the City of Toronto, the Canada Council for the Arts and generous contributions from AGO members, donors and private-sector partners.


For images, interviews, and more information, please contact:

Melissa Prince; Veritas Communications



Andrea-Jo Wilson; News Officer, Communications

416-979-6660, ext.403,

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