Anyone can imagine a family such as the Medici, who can chiefly be equated with the Italian Renaissance, could not but generate by their presence and achievements in Florence some of the most opposite reactions. Thus, the rivalries and antagonisms they generated are the natural counterpart of the gratitude they deserved from the part of, let’s say, the plethora of artists the work of whom thrived on the commissions from the Medici.

Thus, the Strozzi family stood out as one of the main rivals of the Medici family, and they vied with the Medici on virtually all levels, including the construction of palatial structures. The Palazzo Strozzi is, consequently, an affirmation of the Strozzi’s presence in Florence and, at the same time, an attempt of stating the Medici did not have the monopoly of artistic life in Florence. The construction of the Palazzo Strozzi began some three decades after the Palazzo Medici Riccardi was completed, that is, in 1489, but the former was finished only in 1538 when, as an irony, the Medici confiscated the structure which returned to the hands of the Strozzi at the end of the 1560s.

The influences of the Palazzo Medici Riccardi on the architectural logic of the Palazzo Strozzi are more than obvious, being reflected by the Romanesque style of the latter dotted with rusticated details. However, Benedetto da Maiano, the architect commissioned to design the structure, did not confine himself to imitate the Medici Riccardi Palace but, as it were, he only undertook the model creatively. The Palazzo Strozzi is said to better the Palazzo Medici Riccardi with respect to proportions and symmetry, a feature the materialization of which is owed both to Benedetto da Maiano and to its successor to the work, Simone del Pollaiolo, dubbed Il Cronaca.

Niccolo Grosso too, a famed Florentine blacksmith during the 16th century, shared in to the ornamentation of the building, by his wrought iron work. The palace used to be the residence of the Strozzi family until 1937, but at present it is home to several cultural organizations, such as the Institute of Humanist Studies and the Strozzi Palace Foundation (Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi), being chiefly used for sundry exhibits, artistic performances or fashion shows.

Palazzo Strozzi
Piazza Strozzi, Florence
Telephone number:
0039 (0)55 27 76 461