The Corsini Collection
Yesterday Claire and I went to the Auckland Art Gallery to see the Corsini Collection. It's amazing and I cannot recommend it highly enough. The art is incredible, and it's amazing to be able to see individual brush-strokes on the canvas from 500 years ago - it really connects you to the past. Seeing it as one family's collection also adds to the atmosphere: there are paintings throughout of members of the Corsini family, and you get to see their stories: it really makes them come alive.
Here are some pictures that we took from the collection that we felt were particularly interesting from Dragon Princes (or that we just liked a lot!) There's a lot more amazing art that we haven't got in pictures.
The Corsini family tree
Detail from the Corsini family tree: a dedication to all their pet dogs. Naso is in fine company!
A door hanging with the Corsini crest on it. We should come up with the Benicio crest!
Florence, by the banks of the Arno River. In Dragon Princes, Fiumenze is where the blue dragons live.
A Corsini cardinal. I love how much personality he has (and his facial hair!)
A sketch by Raphael of Pope Leo X.
The death of Savonarola, a controversial preacher in Florence. Everyone in the square seems curiously uninterested in what's going on.
All the details in this painting show how educated and widely-travelled this man is. I believe he's one of the Corsini cardinals.
Oh my god it's a Botticelli it's so beautiful oh my god. (Not particularly relevant to Dragon Princes, but it's just so beautiful!)
Ancient architecture. It's meant to be a fantasy version of the past, which makes it relevant for us! This might be where giants lived.
Faith. It made Claire think of Chiara. Also it's an amazing piece of art.
David returning home in victory after defeating Goliath. Proof that you can defeat any enemy if you have two bards in your company. Also, Goliath's sword shows that anime weaponry has always been a thing.
Pots and pans.
A period dress. This is what Fine Clothing looks like.
Another fancy-dress period costume, a page-boy to go with the noble lady costume above. Worn with tights. We found that a lot of the paintings had curious tights that cover the legs and feet, but not the toes. They look odd, and I won't force any of your characters to wear them.
A photo of one of the Corsini boys wearing the page costume.
My hero, Princess Elena Corsini. She saved the art collection by hiding it from the Nazis during the Second World War. (One of the paintings has bullet-holes in it, from when a Nazi soldier shot it!) Her portrait here links the past to the present.
The story of how the collection was saved from the Nazis, and then from a terrible flood.
Romantic scenery shots.
Hercules beating up a very small and somewhat cute Hydra, while a crab nips at his heel.
A sketch of a chubby monk. I can imagine Deltorro's friend Fra Lucio looking like this.
Hercules, and a rather cute looking Cerberus.
Beautiful sketch of a young woman.
Another beautiful sketch. Matilde holding baby Via, perhaps?
Hell! It's populated by demons, imps, dragons, and.. goats? Really, goats don't deserve this.
Water features in a garden. Gardens and water features are popular in the Renaissance, though you won't see many in Vanzenia.
A Saint. She's holding arrows because she's going to get gruesomely martyred with them.
The Madonna with child (I think).
The top of a beautifully decorated chest.
Another saint. He's holding a knife because he's going to get gruesomely martyred with it.
In the children's area, you could dress up and take Renaissance-style portraits. Claire dressed me up.
And I dressed Claire up. I think she's pulling off the Renaissance vibe better than I did.
All art from the Corsini Collection. Auckland Art Gallery, 2017-2018.