This room hosts paintings from the old Cathedral, the private appartments of the Bishops of Ostuni, from the Collection of the Ostuni Chapter and the Art Treasuries of local churches and female monastries. These works are from the Southern area of Italy, in some cases strictly local, realised from the 16th Century onwards. An example of this, Saint Andrew who presents a Canon to the Virgin depicts one of the oldest and most suggestive views of Ostuni. The paintings, even those with a modest value, are precious documents that express the devotion of the Clergy and the local population for the Virgin Mary and the Saints and give us valuable information on the artworks commissioned by the Church and Nobility in the past.
The most notable examples from a historical artistic viewpoint are as follows: Saint Jerome penitent in front of Pope Sisto V (mid 17th Century), Saint Francis receives the indulgence of the Porziuncola (end 17th Century, beginning 18th Century), the monumental table showing Vision of Saint Philip Neri, taken from the original by Guido Reni dated 1614-1615 preserved in the roman church of Saint Mary in Vallicella, the canvas of Saint Gennaro in front of the Gulf of Naples, which shows the eruption of Vesuvius in 1779, and the Portrait of the Archdeacon of Ostuni, Pietro Aurisicchio, painted in 1874 by the Ostuni artist Luigi Oronzo Pappadà (1849-1949).
The decision to display restored and non-restored artworks together was taken with the aim of drawing the attention of the visitor, both religious and lay, to the necessity of preserving this historical-artistic testimony of our common past and to the need to pass it on to future generations and also clearly to raise the money necessary to do so.
Teodoro De Giorgio