From sacred iconography to the role of art itself, whether instrumental to the delight of private individuals or to form a collective conscience, virtually everything is scrutinized. He argues for the need to look at the research of religious historians to understand artistic texts in an utterly different way. This is a part of the Renaissance less studied and less taken for granted, particularly in Southern Europe — Italy, that is.
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Nagel convincingly argues that there did not exist a specific program that addressed nudity or improper visual interpretations of sacred images. Everything was placed in the hands of the individual surveyors and their artistic sensibility. When, then, did artistic license become a problem?
Idolatry comes as a result of putting certain esthetic criteria on a scale, a scale that is a product of society. As such, its connotation varies from Florence to Northern Europe. What is recognizable in the Netherlands i. Doubling — the character and the real person who modeled for it — produces a theatrical effect The widespread use of wax effigies in Florence at the time has a role in the passage between inserting portraits of real people of the time into paintings representing sacred images.
Ghirlandaio is a good example of creating balance between sacred figures and portraits of Florentines of his time in his Tornabuoni chapel How do you avoid idolatric worshiping, then? How do you rethink image? The scholar addresses this issue from multiple points and perspectives. In the pre-Council of Trent period, we had the debate about the supremacy of sculpture over painting, with different positions taken by Castiglione, Bronzino, and Benedetto Varchi, respectively, but not exclusively.
They all recognized the importance of sculpture for the urban landscape. The illustrations in this volume are superb. The layout of the book renders justice to the masterpieces with which and of which Nagel is conversing. The challenge in question deals with the hidden aspects of the Rinascimento. Nagel offers such an enjoyable and refreshing look at this complex period that I truly suggest this read to scholars, for he proves the fallacy of some aspects of art history and its connections to the society of the period, thus making manifest the dynamic force of scholarly criticism.
But it is always, and especially, a critical reading of the reality a painting interprets. Kissing the Wild Woman.
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This work has been overlooked by early modern and contemporary scholars alike. With Kissing the Wild Woman, Nissen provides a welcome and discerning examination of Urania, considering the literary, historical, and art-historical contexts surrounding the author. Nissen devotes particular attention to Boccaccio, whose Fiammetta and Filocolo helped shape the prose romance genre in Italian.
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In the end, the fictional Urania and the historical Bigolina are in many ways corresponding figures. While dominant male voices in the century would argue that a woman should achieve self- expression by posing for paintings, Bigolina counters that women can find a more appropriate outlet by harnessing the written word. By devoting due attention to a complex and neglected early modern prose romance, and by writing in a language accessible to scholars and students in all fields, Nissen gives Bigolina the voice she deserves. The Perfect Genre. Drama and Painting in Renaissance Italy.
Surrey UK : Ashgate, Following her introduction, Kristin Phillips-Court has divided her book into five main chapters, each dealing with a different play. Her focus on textual analysis is supplemented by examination of works of the visual arts: religious frescoes and panels, mythologies, allegorical portraiture, state portraits, and pastoral scenes.
The Perfect Genre is a welcome and necessary study with a truly interdisciplinary orientation. While this approach is not unusual in Italian histories of drama, it is under-represented in Anglo-American publishing. Phillips-Court organizes her investigations by first giving a close reading of select passages from the literary work under consideration. Her quotations appear in the original and in English, an intelligent choice that will make her work accessible both to university students and to scholars of English drama, who will see the relevance to the development of theater and the visual arts in a wider context.
In addition, she examines the biblical and classical sources of Italian Renaissance drama. Phillips-Court does not adequately justify overlooking the seminal productions of Bibbiena and Ariosto, presented with splendid sets by Peruzzi and Raphael. Although her interest is not in artists who were involved in mounting theatrical productions, it would have strengthened her art historical readings to have addressed this field of artistic exchange. Her examination of Tasso is rich and original. Tasso, like Dante and Boccaccio, inspired many artists, but Phillips-Court is concerned to demonstrate the productive dialectical relationship between word and image.
The final chapters on Tasso and Bruno deal with philosophical and metaphysical debates. Phillips-Court shows that she is equally at home with cultural history and political theory. Phillips-Court analyzes the self-fashioning of Paul III Alessandro Farnese and of his family members, in which Titian played so important a role as portraitist, while Caro filled the position of humanist secretary.
Rather, Titian took the unprecedented step of depicting a pope with his head uncovered in one of the two versions of the famous portrait, where Paul is not bald nor is his tonsure in evidence. Earlier in the sixteenth century, Raphael set a precedent in his portrait of Pope Julius II, which he followed in his subsequent portrait of Leo X. This precedent influenced Sebastiano del Piombo in several versions of Pope Clement VII, yet all of these depictions emphasized the ceremonial role of the papacy by outfitting the pope in his appropriate headgear.
Phillips-Court uses different registers of theoretical language in her study: literary criticism, historicism, film studies, art history, and visual theory. The use of film studies is informative and judiciously handled, resulting in a greater appreciation of the technical advancements of Renaissance artists and writers. Occasionally the theory overwhelms the analysis. Was it Brunelleschi who designed the theatrical machinery? Readers of The Perfect Genre will find themselves turning to the plays and visual works in question for a closer look — an admirable achievement worthy of the best tradition of humanist exegesis.
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Both the black-and-white images and the color plates are nicely produced. Pp Classical intertextuality in the Furioso has been thoroughly examined on both sides of the Atlantic. Stoppino takes into consideration various kinds of intertextuality and the importance of gender and female genealogy within the Furioso. In the first chapter, Stoppino concentrates on Bradamante as a female warrior in the Furioso and recalls her appearance as such in the cantari and poemi cavallereschi.
The primary texts discussed in this chapter include two late fifteenth-century works: Historia di Bradiamonte sorella di Rinaldo Brescia, and the Inamoramento de Carlo Magno Venezia, The Ariostean incarnation of the Amazon-like figure was inspired by previous epic poetry Virgil, Pulci, Boiardo as well as by travel narratives e.
In chapter 4, Stoppino examines how genealogy is transmitted through prophecy in the poem. Melissa, for example, imparts prophetic knowledge about the future Este dynasty to Bradamante. The author carefully traces the relationship of Bradamante to medieval literary figures of the sorceress and the sibyl. The role of females within dominant patrilineal narratives becomes the main topic of this section.
Specifically, she discusses how Ariosto challenges traditional patrilineal prophecy by making Bradamante the addressee of future Este dynastic knowledge. The notion of women as political subjects becomes especially apparent in marriage when loyalty is split between a family of origin and an acquired family. In the Rocca di Tristano episode, Bradamante becomes the female founder of the Este lineage. Ariosto is able to revitalize classical tales through their medieval representations within the Furioso. The most striking is the introduction of the beauty contest for the women, absent from the French models.
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Gender plays an important role, and female warriors recall the longstanding but often overlooked tradition of the genealogy of gender. Her research is precise, well-documented and uncovers several intertextual references to medieval romance narratives in the Furioso. Texts and Translations. Medieval and Renaissance Texts and Studies This edition of Florentine Sacre rappresentazioni gathers some of the religious plays by Feo Belcari and Castellano Castellani and places itself among recent works dedicated to a rediscovery of this genre.
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The sacre rappresentazioni, plays representing the lives of saints or biblical episodes, now attract the interest of scholars since the elaboration of biblical and hagiographical models can provide significant insights into the cultural environment in which they were produced. The project behind this volume is ambitious and undoubtedly significant in the field of Renaissance studies.