VASARI, Giorgio (1511-1574). Autograph letter signed to Giovanni Caccini, Provveditore in Pisa, Florence, 27 August 1563, 16 lines on one page, folio (288 x 218mm), integral address leaf, traces of seal, contersigned on receipt.
Vasari explains, after greetings and reference to a dispatch of linen for his wife, that he is planning to go on the next day to visit Duke Cosimo I de' Medici -- 'Sua Eccellenza illustrissima' -- at his villa at Poggio a Caiano. With him will be 'lo spedalingo' [Don Vincenzo Borghini, the prior of the Ospedale degli Innocenti in Florence, and a noted humanist and artistic adviser].
The motive for the visit must presumably have been to discuss the decoration of the so-called Salone del Cinquecento in the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, on which both men were engaged for Cosimo. The vast expanses of the Salone, for which Leonardo da Vinci's Battle of Anghiari and Michelangelo's Battle of Cascina frescoes, neither ever completed, were intended, were eventually frescoed by Vasari and his équipe with scenes from Florentine history in commemoration of the Medici. It was Borghini who advised on the selection and ordering of the various scenes on the vault and walls.
Caccini's intimate friendship with Vasari and Borghini had presumably begun in Florence before his appointment in 1561 to Pisa as Provveditore de'Fossi, concerned with flood defences and river management. As an expert in water transport, he was involved in the movement of materials for the architectural and sculptural projects of the Medici and returned to Florence occasionally, while Vasari stayed with him in Pisa in 1562. Their relationship largely continued through letters which date from 1561 to 1568. Caccini's replies have been lost but the bulk of the significant correspondence from Vasari to Caccini, nearly thirty letters in the Archivio Ginori Conti, was published by H.W. Frey, Neue Briefe von Giorgio Vasari, 1940; seven letters in various private collections had earlier been published by K. Frey, Der literarische Nachlass Giorgio Vasaris, 1923. The present letter is apparently UNPUBLISHED.