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Was the Renaissance just a period of extraordinary art and architecture? The Renaissance: All That Matters examines the major developments of the Renaissance era from its beginnings in Italian city/states to later cultural, political, and scientific achievements in France, Spain, England, and Germany. By examining original sources and introducing readers to new research and important debates, this accessible book provides an exciting introduction to the Renaissance age. This book attempts to answer two questions. Firstly, what are the essential features of the Renaissance movement that gradually transformed Europe in the fourteenth, fifteenth, and sixteenth centuries? Secondly, how many of these cultural, artistic, and intellectual transformations continue to influence modern societies today? The Renaissance began as a renewal of classical Greek and Roman culture that originated in fourteenth-century Italy, gradually spread throughout Europe, and continues to influence Western societies up to the present. The Renaissance: All That Matters introduces the brilliant writers and cultural innovators of the Renaissance, who transformed the West through their scholarly, artistic, and scientific activities, including Francesco Petrarch, Leonardo da Vinci, Niccolo Machiavelli, Thomas More, and Galileo Galilee. Throughout the Renaissance, intriguing visionaries revived the study of literature, reformed medieval universities, invigorated the arts, enhanced the economy, explored new geographic worlds, and invented machines and devices such as the printing press, the telescope, firearms, and clocks.
Albrecht Durer (1471-1528) is arguably the first truly international artist, a celebrity both during his own lifetime and since. A major artist of the northern Renaissance, he was praised by his contemporaries and described shortly after his death as `the prince among German painters'. Durer's achievements as a painter were matched by his remarkable manipulation of the traditional techniques of woodcut and engraving, which altered the history of printmaking and ensured that his works were admired and collected throughout Europe. The British Museum holds one of the finest collections of Durer's graphic art in the world, with superlative prints and drawings from all phases of his career. Beginning with an introduction to the life of the artist, the book presents a selection of Durer's best-known works including early figure studies, landscape watercolours, animal studies drawn from nature and his imaginative famous prints such as Adam and Eve, Rhinoceros and Melancholia. As well as demonstrating Durer's astonishing range of subject matter, the book explores his working method and the versatile, spontaneous nature of his draughtsmanship. The development of Durer's ideas from drawings to related woodcuts and engravings is also investigated, making the book a perfect concise introduction to this fascinating and much-admired artist.
Notwithstanding the wealth of material published about St Clare of Assisi (1193-1253) in the context of medieval scholarship, and the wealth of visual material regarding her, there is a dearth of published scholarship concerning her cult in the early modern period. This work examines the representations of St Clare in the Italian visual tradition from the thirteenth century on, but especially between the fifteenth and the mid-seventeenth centuries, in the context of mendicant activity. Through an examination of such diverse visual images as prints, drawings, panels, sculptures, minor arts, and frescoes in relation to sermons of Franciscan preachers, starting in the thirteenth century but focusing primarily on the later tradition of early modernity, the book highlights the cult of women saints and its role in the reform movements of the Osservanza and the Catholic Reformation and in the face of Muslim-Christian encounter of the early modern era. Debby's analyses of the preaching of the times and iconographic examination of neglected artistic sources makes the book a significant contribution to research in art history, sermon studies, gender studies, and theology.
The last great master of the Renaissance, Domenikos Theotokopoulos (1541-1614), known as El Greco, 'The Greek', holds a singular place in the history of art. Born in Crete, trained in the Byzantine tradition, El Greco continued his apprenticeship in Italy, in contact with Venetian aesthetics and Roman mannerism. It was in Spain, where he settled in the 1570s and where he imported his Italian influences (Titian, Tintoretto, Michelangelo) that he revealed the extent of his talents. In Toledo, he painted both secular and altar paintings, such as his masterpiece, The Burial of the Count of Orgaz.
Isabella d'Este, the marchioness of Mantua, was a collector of antiquities, a patron of art, and one of the most vivid personalities of the Italian Renaissance. Her artistic relationship with Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519) is charted through the letters that they exchanged over the course of about six years. Beginning in late 1499, Leonardo spent several months in Mantua, where he met Isabella and produced a finished portrait drawing of her. In the years that followed, the marchioness wrote to the artist to ask him to undertake other paintings and projects. Though little came of these requests, da Vinci did produce a drawing of some classical hard-stone vases to assist her search for collectible antiques and also started work on a painting of Christ as a twelve-year-old boy at her request. The story of their relationship is explored in depth for the first time in Isabella and Leonardo. This illuminating story raises interesting and important questions about relationships between artists and patrons, and about women as art patrons at the beginning of the 16th century.
Sigmund Freud was already internationally acclaimed as the principal founder of psychoanalysis when he turned his attention to the life of Leonardo da Vinci. It remained Freud's favourite composition. Compressing many of his insights into a few pages, the result is a fascinating picture of some of Freud's fundamental ideas, including human sexuality, dreams, and repression. It is an equally compelling - and controversial - portrait of Leonardo and the creative forces that according to Freud lie behind some of his great works, including the Mona Lisa. With a new foreword by Maria Walsh.
Objects of beauty and prestige with their rich color and fine detail, early Netherlandish oil paintings were among the most widely sought-after works of the Renaissance. Beginning in the early 15th century with Jan van Eyck, and ending in the mid-16th century with the career of Pieter Bruegel the Elder, this magnificently illustrated book explores the achievements of this glorious and innovative period in Netherlandish painting.
Susan Frances Jones focuses on over 50 selected works from the National Gallery, London collection to illuminate the roles played by paintings in political, domestic, religious, and secular contexts. Drawing on the Gallery's remarkable research into materials and techniques, she describes how painters' working and creative practices changed and shifted over time. The author also considers whether Northern European artists, like some of their counterparts, laid claim to intellectual as well as artistic sophistication.
This comprehensive, interdisciplinary collection illuminates many previously unexplored aspects of the Basilica of San Lorenzo's history, extending from its Early Christian foundation to the modern era. Brunelleschi's rebuilt Basilica, the center of liturgical patronage of the Medici and their grand-ducal successors until the nineteenth century, is today one of the most frequently studied churches in Florence. Modern research has tended, however, to focus on the remarkable art and architecture from ca. 1400-1600. In this wide-ranging collection, scholars investigate: the urban setting of the church and its parish; San Lorenzo's relations with other ecclesiastical institutions; the genesis of individual major buildings of the complex and their decorations; the clergy, chapels and altars; the chapter's administration and financial structure; lay and clerical patronage; devotional furnishings, music, illuminated liturgical manuscripts, and preaching; as well as the annual or ephemeral festal practices on the site. Each contribution offers a profound exploration of its topic, wide-ranging in its chronological scope. One encounters here fresh archival research, the publication of relevant documents, and critical assessments of the historiography. San Lorenzo is represented in this volume as a living Florentine institution, continually reshaped by complex historical forces.
One of the finest works from the golden era of Flemish manuscript illumination, the Getty's copy of the Romance of Gillion de Trazegnies tells of the adventures of a medieval nobleman. Part travelogue, part romance, and part epic, the text traces the exciting exploits of Gillion as he journeys to Jerusalem on pilgrimage, is imprisoned in Egypt and rises to the command of the Sultan's armies, mistakenly becomes a bigamist first with a Christian and then a Muslim wife, and dies in battle as a glorious hero. The tale encompasses the most thrilling elements of the Western romance genre -- love, villainy, loyalty, and war -- set against the backdrop of the East. This lavishly illustrated volume reveals for the first time the complexity of this illuminated romance. A complete reproduction of the book's illustrations and a partial translation of the text appear along with essays that explore the manuscript's vibrant cultural, historical, and artistic contexts. The innovative illuminations, by the renowned artist Lieven van Lathem, juxtapose the reality of medieval Europe with an idealized vision of the East. This unusual pairing, found in the text and illustrations, is the source of a rich discussion of the fifteenth-century political situation in the West and the Crusades in the East.
"Singularly interesting and stimulating. . . . A passionate and
original work of scholarship."--Richard Wollheim, "Times Literary
The Virgin Mary rises up like a giant Tower of Babel in a close-up view, separated from us by a slender railing along which runs the painter's signature. The Virgin appears to be sitting on a marble slab, slightly raised, and her right shoulder is thrust forward to show us her nude son. Madonna and Child, also known as 'Dudley Madonna', was painted in c. 1508 by Giovanni Bellini (Venice, c. 1430-1516), one of the most celebrated of Italian artists. This book tells the story of the painting, its painter and its provenance - the journey from Bellini's 16th-century Venice to Dudley's 19th-century London - and the context in which it was created, and later collected. The painting was probably acquired in Bologna by John William Ward (1781-1833), who in 1827 became the 1st Earl of Dudley. He was described by his contemporaries as a cultured and educated man, but also, especially in his later years, tending to madness. The Dudley collection was one of the most outstanding in 19th-century England. The years 1505-10 were crucial ones in Giovanni Bellini's career, and this book examines anew the part he played in Venetian High Renaissance painting - his influence upon and response to the upcoming Giorgione, Titian and Sebastiano del Piombo; it looks in particular at the importance of the visit to the Venice of the Florentine Fra Bartolommeo in 1508. Antonio Mazzotta was Pidem Curatorial Assistant at the National Gallery, London, between 2008 and 2010, and he curated the exhibition, Titian's First Masterpiece: The Flight into Egypt, at the National Gallery, London, 4 April - 19 August 2012.
The life, style and colours of the great master of the 16th-century Venetian painting. Tiziano Vecellio was a remarkably versatile painter, equally comfortable with a wide range of genres and subjects. Unlike many artists from history whose work has been appreciated only after their death, Titian enjoyed fame and success throughout his career, which spanned over seven decades. Based in Venice, Titian received commissions from many local patrons and the Venetian government, as well as many distinguished figures from further afield, such as the Pope, the German emperor and the King of Spain. This small book is a perfect introduction to the work of this original and influential Renaissance artist.
A detailed account of a fascinating journey through the Ottoman Empire from 1588 to 1589 Traveller and explorer, art patron and collector, benefactor and connoisseur, politician and Danzig mayor, Bartholomaus Schachman lived in a time of major political and religious changes in Europe, a time of grand geographical discoveries, a time when both religious and secular arts flourished, a time of great expansion of the Ottoman Empire. He was born on 11th September 1559 in Danzig (nowadays called Gda'nsk), then the autonomy's trade city and member of The Hanseatic League, within the Kingdom of Poland. Danzig was one of the largest Hansa's cities and one of the most important sea port and shipbuilding markets. Bartholomaus Schachman's journey through the Ottoman Empire lasted two years from 1588 to 1589, and his album, conveying the tale of his adventures, became one of the greatest travelogues of the sixteenth century.
There was a time seven centuries ago when Famagusta's wealth and renown could be compared to that of Venice or Constantinople. The Cathedral of St Nicholas in the main square of Famagusta, serving as the coronation place for the Crusader Kings of Jerusalem after the fall of Acre in 1291, symbolised both the sophistication and permanence of the French society that built it. From the port radiated impressive commercial activity with the major Mediterranean trade centres, generating legendary wealth, cosmopolitanism, and hedonism, unsurpassed in the Levant. These halcyon days were not to last, however, and a 15th century observer noted that, following the Genoese occupation of the city, 'a malignant devil has become jealous of Famagusta'. When Venice inherited the city, it reconstructed the defences and had some success in revitalising the city's economy. But the end for Venetian Famagusta came in dramatic fashion in 1571, following a year long siege by the Ottomans. Three centuries of neglect followed which, combined with earthquakes, plague and flooding, left the city in ruins. The essays collected in this book represent a major contribution to the study of Medieval and Renaissance Famagusta and its surviving art and architecture and also propose a series of strategies for preserving the city's heritage in the future. They will be of particular interest to students and scholars of Gothic, Byzantine and Renaissance art and architecture, and to those of the Crusades and the Latin East, as well as the Military Orders. After an introductory chapter surveying the history of Famagusta and its position in the cultural mosaic that is the Eastern Mediterranean, the opening section provides a series of insights into the history and historiography of the city. There follow chapters on the churches and their decoration, as well as the military architecture, while the final section looks at the history of conservation efforts and assesses the work that now needs to be done.
Leonardo da Vinci: A Reference Guide to His Life and Works covers all aspects of his life and work, beginning with his paintings, including several he never completed, that form the core of his artistic oeuvre. The extensive A to Z section includes several hundred entries. The bibliography provides a comprehensive list of publications concerning his life and work *Includes a detailed chronology detailing Leonardo Da Vinci's life, family, and work. *The A to Z section includes Leonardo's main patrons, the major places he worked, and the artists and scholars whose work and ideas played an important role in the formation of his career. *The bibliography includes a list of publications concerning his life and work. *The index thoroughly cross-references the chronological and encyclopedic entries.
Diego Velazquez (1599-1660), considered by many to be the greatest of Spain's great painters, spent his crucial formative years in Seville, learning his craft and producing many early masterpieces. When he departed from his native city as a young man of 24, Velazquez's accomplishments were already impressive: he left to assume the position of Court Painter to Philip IV of Spain in Madrid. In this beautifully illustrated book, an international team of art scholars explores the importance of Seville for Velazquez. Discussions range across many topics, including Velazquez's education and training, Sevillian culture and Catholic theology, picaresque literature, and Velazquez's subject matter-portraiture, sacred subjects, and the bodegones (kitchen and tavern scenes with prominent still life) in which Velazquez developed his distinctive naturalistic style. The Seville of Velazquez's youth was the chief Spanish port of trade with the New World and a major religious center that witnessed the passionate controversy over the mystery of the Immaculate Conception, a subject depicted in an early Velazquez painting. Other surviving paintings from the artist's Sevillian years include his first dated painting, Old Woman Cooking Eggs (1618), and his famous masterpiece Water-seller of Seville. This book serves as the catalogue for a major exhibition on Velazquez's early work to be held at the National Gallery of Scotland in Edinburgh, August 8 through October 20, 1996. The exhibit also includes a selection of influential works by Velazquez's important contemporaries, such as the sculptor Montanes and painters Alonso Cano and Ribalta.
Chess; Cards; Dice; Game Play; Early Modern social history
The untold story of how paper revolutionized art making during the Renaissance, exploring how it shaped broader concepts of authorship, memory, and the transmission of ideas over the course of three centuries In the late medieval and Renaissance period, paper transformed society-not only through its role in the invention of print but also in the way it influenced artistic production. The Art of Paper tells the history of this medium in the context of the artist's workshop from the thirteenth century, when it was imported to Europe from Africa, to the sixteenth century, when European paper was exported to the colonies of New Spain. In this pathbreaking work, Caroline Fowler approaches the topic culturally rather than technically, deftly exploring the way paper shaped concepts of authorship, preservation, and the transmission of ideas during this period. This book both tells a transcultural history of paper from the Cairo Genizah to the Mesoamerican manuscript and examines how paper became "Europeanized" through the various mechanisms of the watermark, colonization, and the philosophy of John Locke. Ultimately, Fowler demonstrates how paper-as refuse and rags transformed into white surface-informed the works for which it was used, as well as artists' thinking more broadly, across the early modern world.
This monograph celebrates the National Gallery's 2015 acquisition of Giovanni da Rimini's Scenes from the Lives of the Virgin and Other Saints (c. 1300--1305). The painting is a rare survival from the late Middle Ages, uniting the exquisite detail of late Byzantine icons with the new, more naturalistic and expressive style exemplified by the Florentine painter Giotto. Probably created for private contemplation and worship, the painting may be the left wing of a diptych, a theory that is examined here in relation to its assumed companion panel Scenes from the Life of Christ (from the Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Antica, Palazzo Barberini, Rome). Significant new research explains its iconography, its devotional function, and the historical context in which it was created, while fresh technical analysis brings a greater understanding of the making and purpose of the panels and how they were originally displayed.
A rich account of the giant bronze doors so exquisite that Michelangelo proclaimed them suitable to serve as the "Gates of Paradise" In 1452, Florentine sculptor Lorenzo Ghiberti unveiled a masterpiece that had been a quarter-century in the making: ten bronze panels depicting intricate scenes from the Old Testament. The monumental gilded bronze doors (each more than 15 feet tall) were designed for the Baptistery in the Piazza del Duomo in Florence. Centuries of admirers have considered "The Gates of Paradise" one of the great masterworks of Western art. This extensively illustrated book displays the full glory and elaborate details of many of the newly restored bronze panels, the extraordinary work of the conservators and restorers who cleaned the priceless doors. In a series of fascinating chapters, expert contributors capture Ghiberti's world, his remarkable talent at representing human emotion in rich illusionistic settings, the relationships between Renaissance patrons and artists, and the collaborations and rivalries among artists. Other chapters explore the challenging craft of bronze sculpture, Ghiberti's casting and finishing techniques, and the painstaking process involved in documenting and restoring the treasured doors. A chronology of Ghiberti's life completes this lavishly produced volume.
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