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The Renaissance - Part One   iCal entry for this event

10th January 2018 to 14th March 2018

14:00 - 16:00

 

Led by Geoffrey Nuttall


Traditional accounts of ‘The Renaissance’ begin in Florence around 1400 with the renewal of scholarly
interest in the ancient world and the works of a new generation of Florentine artists, most famously
Brunelleschi, Donatello, Masaccio, and Ghiberti. According to art historians from Giorgio Vasari in the
sixteenth century to Kenneth Clark in the twentieth, this ‘Florentine Renaissance’ went on to conquer
Italy, reaching its apogee during the last quarter of the fifteenth century in the ‘masterpieces’ of Andrea
del Verrocchio, Sandro Botticelli, Domenico Ghirlandaio and others, and laying the foundations of the
sixteenth century’s ‘High Renaissance’.


Italian Renaissance artists have thus been credited with many of the great innovations of Western Art: the
invention of perspective, the rediscovery of nature, new ways of expressing man’s relationship with God,
the revival of classical antiquity, the realisation of personal identity and the rise of the artist. Italian
Renaissance values still frame our understanding of ‘Western Art,’ and condition our responses to the art
of other cultures and continents. In investigating the art of the cinquecento, this series of lectures
questions these Italo-centric assumptions about ‘The Renaissance.’ It looks beyond Italy, to Northern
Europe and the artistic revolution that took place simultaneously in the workshops of Flemish and German
masters such as Jan van Eyck, Rogier van der Weyden and Hans Memling, whose true status as
Renaissance artists has been long overshadowed by their Italian counterparts.


Each week, the course will investigate one critical aspect of ‘Renaissance’ art, from the development of
perspective to the enhanced status of the artist. In doing so it will survey the key works of the period,
produced both north and south of the Alps. But as well as looking closely at the works of art themselves,
who made them, how they were made, displayed, used and valued, the course will draw on contemporary
and modern writings to ask how the idea of ‘Renaissance Art’ came into being, how it has mutated over
time, and the extent to which it remains a coherent art-historical concept.


Lectures


1. Renaissance or Renaissances? 
2. Space 
3. Vision 
4. Nature 
5. Piety 
6. Antiquity
7. Magnificence
8. The Body
9. Identity
10. The Rise of the Artist


Geoffrey Nuttall obtained his PhD at The Courtauld Institute of Art, and is now an associate lecturer in
the Renaissance faculty of the Institute. He has held fellowships at the Huntington Library in California
and the Dutch Institute in Florence and has published articles and book chapters on his area of special
interest, the patronage of the wealthy silk merchants of the Tuscan city of Lucca between 1350 and 1550.

 

Location: Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church, 235 Shaftsbury Avenue, London WC2H 8EP

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Members only 10-01-2018 until 09-01-2018 29 £180