What is a grotesque decoration
The courtyard Michelozzo projected in 1453 was upset in 1565, one century later, when Francesco I married Giovanni d'Austria. It was embellished with fifteen landscapes decorations of the Austrian Empire to honour Giovanna, Massimiliano's brother the Austrian Emperor.
The vaults of the cpurtyard were decorated with grotesques, following the old Roman style. This particular and strange representations made of monsters, vegetal and floral motifs, hybrid creatures was discovered for the first time in Rome at the end of the XV century: a man fell accidentally in a grotto completely decorated in a similar way. Anybody knew it was Nerone's house! Immediately Filippino Lippi, Domenico Ghirlandaio, Raffaello studied and reproduced a similar decoration for their works of art and soon it became the typical Renaissance representation.
This is the reason why you find grotesques in Florentine museums: in the Uffizi gallery, in Boboli garden, in Palazzo Vecchio and so on.
On the left the courtyard of Palazzo Vecchio: you can visit it with us!! On the 1st of July a guided tour inside Palazzo Vecchio! We will visit together even the tower built by Arnolfo di Cambio...Don't miss it!!
Courtyard of Michelozzo