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One of the oldest and most famous museums in the world is the Uffizi Gallery, located in the palazzo in Florence which is called the Palazzo degli Uffizi. The reason why this gallery is so famous is because this is a gallery where you see a countless number of masterpieces.

The gallery was built near the end of the 16th century by Cosimo I, who was the son of Granduca Francisco de’ Medici, and it was designed by Vasari who was one of the top painters and architects in this period. This was done under the request of  Medici, which he actually planned as the building is right next to the Medici Palace and extends to the Arno river, over the Ponte bridge. But surprisingly it was built quickly, as there were other major events that were happening at the same time in the area such as the marriage between Francisco and the Giovanna of Austria.

The collection of pieces actually began in 1574 when Cosimo I turned the second floor into a place where he could look at the pieces of art he had collected. He entrusted Buotalenti – the successor to Vasari – to put together all the pieces.

The year of 1737 was an important year for the gallery, but more important for Florentine collections of art, as the Medici family was down to its last heiress. Anna Maria Luisa was the last remaining member of Medici family that still lived in the palace, but she was getting married to the king of Lorena, which meant she was going to move to France. Many thought this meant that a lot of art that in the gallery was going to be removed because of this.

But that wasn’t the case as she signed an agreement to keep all her artist’s possession on display for the public to see in the gallery.

Maybe this was a good thing as the gallery saw many changes after this, and while sadly some pieces of art had to be sold at the same time this saw the gallery get renovated with new staircases and hallways. Also many famous niobe pieces of art were moved from Rome to a specially created hall.

Today in the gallery there are many facilities that help bring the best out of the works, like an arts restoration laboratory which looks to preserve and amend pieces of art that need a bit of sprucing up  to restore it to its original condition (well at least as best they can), also while the research does a bit of that as well it is more about finding out about piece of art or the period in which it was painted. The collections continue to grow, as there are now over 900 self portraits all in their own sector that have often brought in. They also have a gift shop that sells replicas of the pieces of art you see in the gallery, some of them are so close to the real thing that they wouldn’t look out of place in one of the vintage Tuscany villas.

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