Mandralisca Museum

Design and creation of an exhibition of “Portrait of a Man” by Antonello da Messina


‚ÄúPortrait of a Man‚Äù – considered for a long time as the “Portrait of an Unknown Mariner” — is one of Antonello da Messina’s most famous portraits (1429-1479). According to tradition it came originally from Lipari and was used as a pharmacy door and was bought in the 1800s by the Baron Enrico Piraino di Mandralisca for his collection and then subsequently donated to the city of Cefal√π.
The design of the new exhibition came from the need to improve the conservation conditions and display a wooden painting. The area was located in two halls of the museum that were previously dedicated to the painting. In the first hall a backdrop where photos of the artist’s paintings and some panels dedicated to his life and pictorial production are helpful to the visitor to understand the work. In the second hall, the painting has been placed inside a climate controlled display case with fiber optical illumination.