On the occasion of the opening ceremony of 2013―The Year of Italian Culture in the United States, the National Gallery of Art will unveil tomorrow, Wednesday December 12, at an invitation-only ceremony, the only presentation in the United States of the David-Apollo by Michelangelo, on loan from the Museo Nazionale del Bargello in Florence. Italy’s Foreign Minister, Giulio Terzi di Sant’Agata is expected to unveil the statue.
In 1949, the David-Apollo was lent by the Italian government as a token of gratitude for postwar aid, and to reaffirm the friendship and cultural ties between Italy and the United States. It was installed in time for President Harry Truman’s inaugural reception, held at the Gallery on January 20. During the next six months the installation was seen by more than 791,000 visitors. In 2013, a new generation of visitors to the National Mall for another inauguration―President Barack Obama’s second―will also have the chance to see this masterpiece.
The presentation of Michelangelo’s David-Apollo has been organized by the National Gallery of Art, Washington, The Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Embassy of Italy in Washington, the Soprintendenza Speciale per il Patrimonio Storico, Artistico ed Etnoantropologico e per il Polo Museale della città di Firenze, and the Museo Nazionale del Bargello, Florence.
The statue will be on public view in the West Building from December 13, 2012, through March 3, 2013.
The presentation of Michelangelo’s David-Apollo is also supported by the Corporate Ambassadors Intesa Sanpaolo and Eni.