Whether it be for work or play social networks have become an integral part of our lives and in many cases helping us to survive the trauma of Covid 19. Uffizi Gallery in Florence is no exception and having plunged into social networks only 2 years ago it is rating very high on them and in fact the most followed Museum of Italy.
Since Eike Schmidt took over as Director in 2015, there have been some major changes in the layout and presentation of the works of art, the launch into social networks and the use of popular ‘influencers’ to attract a new audience and increase curiosity and interest. While we may not all agree with the changes he is certainly following his idea of making the Uffizi Gallery “pop, cool and a little rock“! Take a look at the recent video on Uffizi’s Instagram as an example of catching the interest of a younger audience, together with placing some works of art at kid’s height.
And for us bigger kids, following uffizigalleries on facebook, Instagram and/or Twitter the posts are a constant delight and a wealth of information. Not just a passive presence but also an opportunity for dialogue and debate. A series of cooking lessons – Uffizi on the plate– based on still life masterpieces by some of our local chefs kept many of us entertained this winter
And we celebrated the arrival of Spring live from the Botticelli room, 23 March with an intense explanation of the history, mystery and intrigue behind the painting, and the symbolism associated with the over 500 plants and flowers featured.“The impression this year is that of seeing them for the first time, on the green and pristine expanses of the Boboli Gardens, still not open to the public. Anemones are fragile and very delicate flowers, “animated by the wind”, as the word itself, derived from the Greek ἄνεμος (anemos) = wind, says. In fact, they are born on wind-swept meadows at the end of winter, among the blades of grass, with tremulous corollas that the slightest breeze “animates”, shakes, shakes and easily knocks down. A transient and glorious flower, the anemone has always announced Spring. It goes without saying that every day at the Uffizi is Spring. The most famous is that of 1482, by Sandro Botticelli. May the season of Rebirth be for everyone!”
The five most popular works so far from Uffizi Gallery on social media have been dedicated to – Michelangelo’s Tondo Doni, the Laocoonte by Baccio Bandinelli, Pallas and the Centaur by Botticelli, and the Annunciation by Leonardo da Vinci, and the Gaddi Torso.
The influencer who made an appearance was Chiara Ferragni, who has over 20m followers and who Schmidt described as our ‘modern day Venus‘ but I will leave you to judge that. And while many, including me, did not approve of her presence she supposedly increased Uffizi Gallery followers on social networks by 27%, so may have opened up a whole new world to a younger age group, and that’s very encouraging.
Uffizi Gallery also does rather cheeky clips on ‘TikTok’ the one here shows Venus shouting to keep a 1m social distance during Covid 19.
So there is something for everyone from Uffizi Gallery on social networks and it has certainly been a boom for the Museum and an enormous benefit for all of us. Do take a look if you are not already a follower – Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok…..