Chasing Raphael: Rome-Urbino-Delhi

You know Raphael?? (Raffaello) Of course you do! One of the greatest Italian painters from the 15th century, Raphael is a name I associate from my 7th grade history book. Well it seemed I followed his footsteps this year…..Or he followed mine….
Chasing Raphael: Rome-Urbino-Delhi

Raphael (1483-1520)


I was in Rome where Raphael is buried. The Pantheon (which is one of my favorite monuments in the city) is his resting place where he supposedly asked to be buried. I visit The Pantheon every time I go to Rome and this time was no different….That was the first of seeing Raphael.

The Pantheon where Raphael is buried


After Rome, a week later I found myself in Raphael’s home town! Urbino is the town where he was born and it is wholly and solely his town. You cannot mistake it as you see postcards, stores and streets named after him. Below is Raphael’s house and that is how I met Raphael again.
I took a tour in town with Giovanna Luminati from Urbino who is extremely passionate about languages and her land. She enlightened me about her wonderful town completely. If you are ever in Urbino, drop her a message and take a tour. You won’t regret! She can be found on the official Tourism page of Pesaro Urbino.

House of Raphael in Urbino
Raphael is everywhere in Urbino


I returned back home to Delhi and found out that there was a digital exhibition of 35 of Raphael’s works! Unbelievable. My parents and I went to see it.
Some unedited pictures from the wonderful digital exhibit follow. These truly capture the painter’s life of less than 4 decade aptly. What a coincidence to get a chance to “meet” this extraordinary painter again and that too 3 times in 3 weeks!

Raphael in Delhi!
La Madonna di Foligno (Madonna of Foligno)

La Madonna di Foligno was painted first on wood and later on canvas. In 1797 the French took the painting to Paris. It was only returned to The Vatican in 1816.

Il Trionfo di Galatea (The Triumph of Galatea)

Il Trionfo di Galatea was commissioned to be made for Villa Farnesina in Rome. Dolphins and winged cupids! What’s not to like??

Madonna del Cardillino (Madonna and the Goldfinch)
Sposalizio della Vergine (The Wedding of the Virgin)

Sposalizio della Vergine was painted by Raphael when he was only 21! Simply mind blown! The original is now housed in Brera, Milan.
There were many other paintings of his that I wasn’t familiar with, some of them I saw for the first time. However, the gallery has all the information you need and is definitely worth visiting if you are an art lover.. Or maybe go there just to say hello to Raphael like I did.

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Price: INR 20.
Address: National Gallery of Modern Art, Jaipur House, New Delhi.
The exhibit ends on March 4th, 2018.

Related Reading: Palazzo Vecchio in Florence

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31 thoughts on “Chasing Raphael: Rome-Urbino-Delhi

  1. What an awesome experience! I did something similar once, and me being me I went straight to the obvious, I’d lived there before, in the time of that person. It freaked some people out. And I got it very strongly in Venice and Milan.

      1. I had such strong déjà vu, I just knew I’d lived there. Obviously, with Venice everyone has seen pictures. But it was extremely strong in places I couldn’t have seen in pictures. Remember climbing the stairs at St. Mark’s Basilica and getting it really strongly there. Or a random street corner. And at the royal palace in Milan. Again, clearly a tourist attraction, but it was when standing at a certain angle. I have a memory of standing alone somewhere on that trip, which I know can’t be true, because we traveled as a group of seven. And we didn’t split off.
        I kept going on and on about how I’d lived here before, in both places (we went to Venice first), and I could tell that our friend who was hosting us was freaking out, because she’s semi-religious. So I decided on, “you know why everything looks so familiar? It reminds me of France,” which is kind of funny, because in French, and we’re supposed to hate each other. 🙂

        1. WOW! That is something and also very specific. I can imagine why the friend was freaking out 😉 But I feel like that with most of Italy LOL! Strongly felt it in Umbria once.

          1. Honestly, that was the first thing I thought about you when I saw your blog. Maybe back then you were someone who dreamed of India. 😁 Is usually how it worked for me in my past lives.
            It scares the living daylights out of most people, which I totally understand. But I’ve had it all my life, and no one in my family talked about reincarnation ever. Even so, I’ve run into a few people that brought back a lot fear from various lives, so I can totally empathize with my friends.

  2. I love it when the universe gives us gifts like this – all these reminders of Raphael, culminating in the big one – an exhibition in your home town. As you say – unbelievable.

  3. So cool! I love the Pantheon too and love visiting it. Too bad they are going to start making you pay to see it.

  4. What synchronicity Ishita! I too love the Pantheon. There’s something surreal and spiritual about being underneath that gigantic coffered ceiling staring up into the heavens imagining the Romans of old worshipping their deities.

  5. While you were searching for Raphael in Rome, he was waiting for you back home in Delhi. That is some serendipity. Happy to be discovering Italy with you.

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