OREANDA-NEWS. In Italy, a scandal around the famous Raphael’s painting “The Portrait of Pope Leo X with Two Cardinals” erupted.

The scientific committee of the Uffizi Gallery in Florence resigned in protest against the decision to send a masterpiece to an exhibition, dedicated to the 500th anniversary of the death of the great painter, held in Rome. Members of the committee appealed to various high authorities (such as Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities and the City Hall of Florence), recalling that in December last year they included the painting in the list of 24 works of art that under no circumstances can leave the walls of the museum because of the current state of masterpieces.

Director of the Uffizi Gallery Eike Schmidt does not agree with the opinion of experts. He emphasized that the portrait by Raphael was specially restored before of the anniversary, and it is currently in excellent condition. “The exhibition cannot do without a portrait of Leo X, a masterpiece that can perfectly bear a journey to Rome,” he said.