II Century A.D.
Statue of Apollo
Firenze, Uffizi Gallery, inv. 1914 n. 162
This Apollo statue is prominent among the sculptures traceable as belonging to the founding nucleus of the Medicean collections; it was discovered in Rome in mid XVI Century and soon entered the collections of the Cardinal Ferdinando de’ Medici. The statue is a beautiful example of Roman replica after a Praxitelean archetype, representing the god Apollo leaning on a tree-trunk with the snake Python coiled around it. Its legibility was seriously impaired by the thick deposits of dust on top of the ancient wax layers.
At first, the restorer proceeded to ease the tension of the superficial waxes by systematically dusting and buffering with oil essence. Then it was possible to clean the old stucco repairs, making a number of new integrations with marble dust, acrylic resins and natural lime. Some retouching by brush was then necessary to harmonize the chromatic differences of the various parts.
The operations of restoration and consolidation, carried out with great expertise and sensibility, made it possible to draw up a complete graphic map of integrations and re-compositions. The accurate photographic campaign significantly updated the archive documentation for this statue. In conclusion, it can be asserted that the restoration, after decades of neglect, has restored to its original beauty a sculpture which is important not only for the original antique parts (body, parts of arms and legs) but also for its modern additions by Flaminio Vacca, one of the most prominent representatives of the XVI Century Florentine sculpture.