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The Bicocca degli Arcimboldi

The Hall of Knots

The Bicocca degli Arcimboldi

The Hall of Knots

Welcome to the virtual tour of the Bicocca degli Arcimboldi, which will take you through the history and rooms of this wonderful Renaissance building, now the official reception centre of the Pirelli Group. Here are some useful tips to give you a better browsing experience.

You can walk virtually through the rooms, moving in any direction, to whichever room or floor you like, using the arrows you see on the main screen.

A fixed icon at the top right gives you direct access to the various rooms and lets you examine the information that will enrich your virtual experience. Press the button at the bottom right to access this content. The Pirelli Foundation has selected documents and images that let you discover the history of the villa and its close bond with the company.

You can save time by pressing the button at the bottom left, which will take you directly to the next room.

Enjoy the tour!
The Pirelli Foundation staff

12

The interweaving of the ribbon that creates the rosettes forms 12 knots at the centre and 24 bows on the outside. In numerology, 12 is the sum of the number 7 (creation) and 5 (man) and, together with its multiples, it represents the coming of a system of total harmony into the world. It is also found in sacred texts, including the Bible, and particularly in the New Testament: the number of the apostles and of the tribes of Israel, for example, is twelve.

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Leonardo’s knots

The Sala dei Nodi, or “Hall of Knots”, takes its name from the discovery of the decorations with intertwined dark red knots that cover three of the walls of the room. The knot, which was often used in manuscripts and in some works by Leonardo da Vinci, is a decorative motif that goes back to the Mudejar style in the final period of Arab Andalusia. In the Bicocca degli Arcimboldi, the ribbon is knotted into a sort of rosette, in the entrance as well as in the lost frescoes of the staircase (a sixteenth-century derivation of the Sala delle Asse in the Castello Sforzesco, painted by Leonardo himself in 1498).

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