By Adriana Baranello

Giovanni di Cosimo de’ Medici, the younger son of Cosimo Il Vecchio, died on 23 September 1463. Like his father, his brother Piero Il Gottoso, and his nephew Lorenzo Il Magnifico, Giovanni was an ardent supporter of the arts and humanities, commissioning works from the likes of Donatello, Filippo Lippi and Domenico Veneziano. He was an avid collector of musical instruments and patron of music, amassing a notable collection of important works in this sphere, too.

Giovanni is also responsible for the commission of the stunning 15th century Villa Medici in Fiesole. The Villa, constructed between 1451 and 1457, was designed by the famous architect Michelozzo with the likely assistance of Leon Batista Alberti. Giovanni is entombed with his brother Piero in Andrea del Verrocchio’s monumental tomb, commissioned by Lorenzo il Magnifico after his father Piero’s death in 1469.

Andrea del Verrocchio Tomb of Giovanni and Piero de’ Medici, 1469-1472, marble, porphyry, bronze and pietra serena, Basilica di San Lorenzo, Florence.

Mino da Fiesole, Bust of Giovanni de’ Medici, c. 1455, marble, Museo del Bargello, Florence.

The Villa Medici, Fiesole, Italy

Domenico Ghirlandaio, Villa Medici, detail of Dormitio virginis, 1485-1490, fresco Tornabuoni Chapel, Santa Maria Novella, Florence.

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