With respect to the Palazzo Rucellai, what is valuable about this historic edifice is it stands out as a fine example of architectural mastery, which is why the main controversy about it is linked to its authorship. Thus, Giovanni Rucellai commissioned, in all likelihood, Leon Battista Alberti to design the palace in 1446 – the construction of which lasted until 1451 – though Bernardo Rosellino too is said to have contributed, at least in part, to the erection of the edifice.

What is striking about the Palazzo Rucellai refers to the precision of details and to the coherence of the whole structure. Thus, there is an interesting combination of architectural orders alternating in the composition of the building, beginning with the Tuscan or Roman order and ending with the Ionic order and the Corinthian order. There is an air of robustness surrounding the building, which is yielded both by the compact façade covering it and by the abundant rusticated elements the masonry is dotted with.

Studied people passionate about Renaissance architecture tend to believe the lay-out of the palace, that is, its disposition around an inner court, has been inspired by the way Brunelleschi had designed the arrangement of the loggia in the Instituto degli Innocenti. The main highlight with reference to the Palazzo Rucellai is yielded by the Loggia de Rucellai, clearly built after de designs of Alberti, and at present it is used as a place where occasional exhibits are held. In addition, it must be noted that the Museum of the History of Photography (Museo di Storia della Fotografia Fratelli Alinari) or, briefly, the Alinari Museum, has been hosted on the ground floor of the Palazzo Rucellai since 1985. At the same time, the palace is the headquarters of an educational Institute.

Palazzo Rucellai
18 Via della Vigna Nova, Florence
Telephone number:
0039 (0)55 264 5910
0039 (0)55 264 6721