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University of Toronto St. George
Betsy Bennett Purvis

rd FAH377- ALL LECTURE NOTES (updated on Feb. 3 , 2014) Lecture 1- Overview and Introduction -Vasari doted on Michelangelo (painting, sculpture and architecture) -competition and imitation --> conquered/surpassed the ancient Greek and Romans -surpassing nature (figures, and natural world) -rep. a larger type of art (Tuscany, Florence and Rome dominance in areas) -Vasari contrasts this with what you see in Venice -generation of related artists within the same workshops --> competition developed in Florence (as a hot bed for competition) -spurred artist to do better and better (proto-capitalist idea by Vasari)--> cast into the Venetian context [each generation should best the one before] -Florence as major centre of competition and across patrons as well -Orsanmichele- decorated by the guilds -show cased civic prominence -artist and patrons end up competing there -guilds organized into hierarchies (major and minor guilds --> by skilled) -by law- guilds responsible for decoration and had to decorate with their saint (to showcase themselves) -status played out in material used (e.g. bronze [major] to marble [minor]) --> signifier of materials -status also played out by style --> from gothic to natural style -Ghiberti was the premiere caster of bronze in the international gothic style (of aristocracy) used (signified status) -cosmopolitian audience context -compared to Donatello and Nanni di Banco --> new renaissance style (interest in classical rival and classicism) -made of marble -irony- lower guilds moving towards a NEW classical style (rome as republic vs. rome as an empire) -vested interest in the idea of florence as a thriving republic -being a member of a guild was key in having a voice (and to hold office/vote) --> politics -showcased social values -idea of workshops working in competition and together -groups of Florentine artists -Botticelli, Perugino, Ghirlandaio, Rosselli --> from same group (Lorenzo sent these artists to Rome to work on the Sistine, narratives of the new and old testament on the walls) -working together to blend to make the full cycle of images --> hoping for future commissions from the Pope -forced cooperation and potential competition (for patrons in and out of Florence) -Envy and slander --> jealousy -artists undermining one another (verbal and other tactics) -Calumny of Apelles (Botticelli)- criticism, falsehood and truth shining through -Paragone- the competition between the diff. branches of artists -sculpture vs. painting -lineage- Verrocchio (a sculpture) teacher of Leonardo -Portrait of a Lady with Flower- portraying a presence with use of texture in hair, physicality and psychological presence- half length (expressive) with marble- illusion of fabric (imitation of flesh and clothing) -painting to rival, equal, outdo it -color as a component of life-likeness -Leonardo- new technique of oil painting (suffato) (e.g. Portrait of Ginevra de Benci) --> recognized for his mastery of material with paint -Raphael- learned and assimilate quickly (from Leo) -Michelangelo was very secretive and paranoid of people stealing his ideas (destroyed his own cartoons) -Leonardo's dynamism and was more open to pupils and study his art -1504-08 Raphael in Florence -rapid transformation of exposure to Michelangelo and Leonardo (he surpasses the masters in ability) -studied under Perugino (mastering and improving on his master's style) -Michelangelo hated Raphael -Stanzi for Julius -Raphael -Michelangelo- Sistine chapel (happening both at once) -Transfiguration commissioned by Medici cardinal (setting up competition between Raphael and Michelangelo) -Michelangelo only opted in half-way (only designed it) and gave the commission to del Piombo to finish off -disegno --> Florence -colorito --> Venice -Michelangelo wanted to pair disegno with colorito (competition and collaboration) -prints- Duerer and Raimondi (woodcut or copper-plate) -new way of disseminating imagery -ownership, copyright, forgery, plagiarism, etc. --> prints presented these for the first time -Duerer was very successful as a printmaker (monograph sign)--> an original print -the smaller the print the more valuable -Raimondi- wanted to cash in on this market (but he copied all the way down to the signature)-- > huge scandal -original vs. forgery -invention of new media and ideas/images (unique intellect development) -Titian, Tintoretto and Veronese -Veronese as a synthesis of Titian and Tintoretto (est. propriety and status) -Benenuto Cellini- sculptor -Perseus- dialogue with materials -grappling with legacy of Michelangelo -myth pathologies in working with marble (and surpasses bronze (more challenging to work with)) -he has to contend with Ghiberti and with Michelangelo and Donatello -Caravaggio- novelty in painting -striking realism and novel subject (favour and dis-favoured) -early Baroque -revisit plagiarism in printing -Domenichino stealing from Carracci -inventing vs. plagiarism Lecture 2 Artistic competitions in early fifteenth-century Florence -sense of competition ran through many levels of society (part of the civic/public life of Florence) -Florence had a long tradition of this rivalry (even between different cities--> e.g. Florence and Sienna) -both cities profiting enormously from banking and commerce - big influx of money into these cities in the late middle-ages -tax funds for expanding the fabric of the city -procured the Florence Cathedral (vision of grandeur/spirituality) and the Palazzo Vecchio (rep. government and supported by citizens (good will)) -Siena Rival: Siena Cathedral and Palazzo Pubblico -late 1290s and early 1300s--> both Florence and Siena building their cathedrals and town halls -constant sense of having to out do one another -in the end Florence outdid Siena, as Siena did not think of their engineering well enough -the black death in mid-14th C --> Siena never recovered -half to two thirds of the population was wiped out -Florence was the largest city in Europe at one point (13th/14th C) until London in 19th C -repercussions were exponential on economy -inter-city rivalry --> responsible for the most important monuments of these cities -it was the middle-ages that "funded" the scale of the Florence Cathedral (e.g. Medici would not have been able to afford that) -civic rivalry from middle-ages determined much of the commissions in Florence -Franciscan and Dominican order --> wanted to leave their mark on the city as well -citizens also used these churches to assert their status and families (inter-family rivalry) by patroning and renting out spaces -products of the middle-ages (the economic boom) -Guilds/professional association/trade unions -broken down into professional categories -minor guilds who dealt with the lesser-skilled trades (e.g. blacksmiths, concierge, wine merchants, etc.) -the major guilds...large civic institutions became a civic duty to beautify the city (e.g. corporate sponsorship) -Calimala- cloth merchants --> art for the baptistry (present since 1100's) -Pisano- South face of the Florence Baptistery (1330-36) -bronze is expensive- choice of materials 1401- Florence had recovered -competition was called -they wanted who was recognized as the best -quattrofoil format -old testament subject of the sacrifice of Issac- narrative and drama Florence-under attack -Ghiberti- used 1/3 less bronze than Brunelleschi (getting the best value and the most beautiful --> as competition in the minds of patrons) Ghiberti- North doors of the bapistery -classicizing styles and seeping in of architecture in the sculpture (seen in Brunelleschi's work later on) East doors - directly across the cathedral -panel as a window (like in painting) -high relief and new Renaissance technique of perspective -Ghiberti- trying to keep up with his upcoming competitors ORSANMICHELE- right in the centre between the town hall and the Cathedral --> between the secular and religious centres of Florence -unusual church -used to be a warehouse for grain -via Calzaiuoli is a major thoroughfare --> commercial showcase (still today) for the merchants -luxury cloths (wool and silk) --> these merchants were very important for the economy -trend of individual guilds sponsoring individual monuments (acts of charity) -Orsanmichele became a major showcase place for all of the major guilds -was a grain loggia- originally had arches that was open/porch structure (Was where grain was distributed and sold) -upper stories were storage areas for the grain -grand floor- arches are now filled in -image of Mary famous for working miracles (people from all over came to visit) --> Miraculous Madonna -presented a new type of competition --> even the Francesca's and Dominicans were getting jealous (around this religious cult object) -14th C- was important for the guilds to get involved because of the population boom (about 100,000 people) -often could not meet the demand of grains --> often imported from the French -they didn't want the wool workers to riot -very important civic safety net --> very attractive place for guilds to get involved -1339- beautification projects -many massive famines and floods (damaging crops and infrastructure) -civic duty- Orsanmichele would distribute to the poor -in the niches- guilds got to decorate and the rest were drawn by minor guilds -economic problems/bankruptcy -Florentines made a deal with the ruler of Duke of Milan and Southern Italy --> emergency diplomacy -the Duke set himself outside the Town hall --> he was building a moat and had plans to overthrow the government from the outside -Florence quickly drove him out on the feast day of Saint Anne (1343) -five years later...the black death -early 1400's - 14 niches, only 3 were filled -only one of the three exist (1399) --> Madonna of the rose and glass and gold decor (gothic) -pushing civic competition through art -1406- city government decides that from this day forward for all the guilds to put a statue there within ten years or they lose that niche -its like advertising for the guilds -Orsanmichele becomes a hot bed for all sorts of competitions (guilds and artists) -guild of the judges and notaries set it up 1406 (Lamberti --> St. Luke statue) -gothic idiom in marble (style that was dominant- cosmopolitan sensibilities -pan-European style and internationally recognized) -Nanni di Banco- with the Shoemakers guild (minor guild) in marble -only the major guilds were allowed to use bronze and off limits to minor guilds (indication of stratification/hierarchy) -St. Phillip- though limited in using stone/marble they could still use the most up to day style of the time -Ghibherti (premiere bronze worker of Florence)- Calimala wool merchants guild --> lynchman of the commerce in Florence -St. John the baptist (same as the baptistery) and also patron saint of all of Florence -made themselves the face of Florence -also first guild working in bronze (like the bronze doors of the baptistery) --> big spenders -most elegant aspects of the gothic style -the way he has been rendered is very elegant and refined -wore a camel-haired shirt (underneath) and covered by a silk fabric (great great detail and runs all the major hem lines) -represented and helped market their product -over life size (10 ft.) --> first thing of a colossal sculpture since the ancient times -triumphing in technical knowledge--> first to be cast in one piece since antiquity -now in the museum you can see it 360 --> from behind is a mess (a miracle that he poured this in one piece as he almost didn't) -this was masked in the front (As it was perfected) -eyes and teeth had bits of silver inserted (pulled all the stops) --> set a precedent for anyone who would dare follow up with this feat -Donatello, St. Mark (1411-13) for the Linen and Weavers' guild (minor) --> second hand clothing and linen (every day products) -a move away from the elegance of that gothic style embodied in Ghiberti's style -more classically inspired style from the more humble simple style of the Roman Republic -contrapasto pose that is more natural -different type of psychology --> engaged seen in Roman sculpture (a mind behind the face) (Character behind the face) -minor guilds willing to gamble on the up and coming artists -Nanni di Banco- Four crowned saints -Commissioned by his own guild (the stonecarvers and woodworkers) --> high standing in his own guild -the Four crowned Martyrs (Romans who converted to Christianity and Martyred because they didn't carve pagan figures) -last time working in gothic idiom and now working/innovating side-by-side with Donatello -republican and elected governance (looking into that phase in Rome) -modeled form Roman antiquity --> to represent -the virtuous citizen feel -Donatello- St. George (year after) 1415-18 for the Armorers' guild -expressive face of St. George -also beautiful (plebian and response to Ghiberti's St. John) --> classicism and idea of ideal beauty -Shield carved in Marble -used to have a metal helmet and sword (mixed media) that skirted along with what materials were used (yet he clevery used and showcased their skill as metal crafters) -innovating in the base- narrative story (killing the Dragon) --> combination of high relief and creating illusionary space (Schiacciato) --> first time seen in sculpture (squashed relief) --> flattened relief (Ghiberti learned from him) -Nanni di Banco used exclusively high relief in comparison -each of these sculptures becomes a type of response to one another -next commission of Donatello was for the Guelf Party of St. Louis of Toulouse -first bronze response to Ghiberti's -he didn't have much experience (composed of 8 or ten pieces soldered on) --> assembled in multiple pieces (different technical approach) -much more solid (coated in GOLD) --> meant to be in competition visually (but not in technique) -Ghiberti- St. Matthew (one of the last bronze figures he would create) -still sticking with the Gothic style (still international --> cosmopolitan sophistication) -a middle ground of the contrapasto and the very elegance C-curve of St. John the Baptist -a few decades later- when Guelf party became a non-entity -St. Louis moved to Franciscan church -replaced by Christ and St. Thomas (for the Merchant's guild) by Verrochio -testing belief and proof -last time there was a multi-group sculpture was Nanni di banco--> this time in narrative -bronze sculpture replacing a bronze sculpture next to a bronze sculpture (next door is St. John the Baptist) -face the main commercial strip (across generational competition against the last great bronze sculpture Ghiberti) -also done in one piece in technique -the evolution of the Renaissance all here -Brunelleschi disappears from Florence for about 15 years (no commissions) -Vasari said he went off to Rome and studies antique architecture -How to build the dome of the Cathedral? (started in the 1290s) -over several generations -they had a competition for this dome! Lecture 3 Competitive spirit in fifteenth-century Rome: the case of the Sistine Chapel How to build the dome of the cathedral? 1410's Brunelleschi come back -expansion campaigns (late 1290s) for the Cathedral -1400's- cut off point/body, nave, apse arms and minor domes and base of what would be the dome (the marble cladding with oculus windows) -problem: they had envisioned a certain look for the dome, but the crossing/width of the dome was well over 140 ft which topped all domes even the Pantheon -the cathedral would be the largest dome for about a century (now number 2) -but how to build it (projected vision of grandeur) -they have a competition! -traditional building methods couldn't cut it because of costs (the size of that scaffolding) -how to engineer it? --> scaffolding problem -weight of the dome in relation to the width it will cover -->material problem (so that it doesn't collapse on itself) -some bizarre solutions: fill the entire crossing with dirt and lace with gold coins to get them into the space...how to get the dirt out? (kids...absurd!) -Brunelleschi who came up with the solution for the problem of scaffolding and the physical material as well --> it was NEVER done! -he partially didn't want to let out too much to his competition (his network problem was gone because he was away in Florence for such a long time --> cut ties) --> it pays to have a network of friends in Florence (thus he was very secretive and protective of his ideas) -Brunelleschi decides to have a competition with his friends: anyone who can get this egg to stand upright will win -he takes the egg and cracks it just enough to get it to stand it upright (thought outside the box) --> this is what Vasari said (he was clever in that sense) -to hollow the dome out! (a double-shelled dome) -took advantage of the fact of how thick the walls of that drum was (outer shell of masonry and an inner shell (Octagon)- each corner as a rib and breaks it down into 8 sections (held like an umbrella)- he uses stone to build a series of lattice for reinforcement and uses terracotta bricks (a lot lighter) specially molded (L-shaped-into a heringbone interlocking grid) -within the lattice filled in with brick and builds a set of spiral stairs that works up (like a corkscrew) as a chain reinforcement and to work up to the top of the dome into the lantern What about scaffolding problem? -build the scaffolding as he went along laying the bricks inside -mobile scaffolding at each level of progression! -at the bottom just made an elevator shaft at the bottom and it moved along the progression of the dome -Ghiberti was put on the crew as a co-captain and getting paid -Brunelleschi tried to disgrace him (bitter nemesis rivalry): called in sick one day to let Ghiberti try (work halts) but Ghiberti's friends helped -Brunelleschi lets Ghiberti work on the scaffolding and building reinforcements (turns out that section was pretty bad) -so that convinced the employers to take him off the project but kept him on payroll still!!!! -statue of Brunelleschi (looking up at his dome) --> he solidified his place against his rival Lorenzo Ghiberti -Medieval influence -the dome is transitional (plan is Gothic)- but tech for domes was not there till Brunelleschi -he may have extrapolated from the plan for the Pantheon --> but a new use of an antique way of architecture Lecture 3: Competitive Spirit in 15th C Rome -figurative sculpture-under different patronage and concerns with messages -revival of figurative motifs from classical antiquity -Donatello and Verrocchio in non Florentine areas --> Padua and Venice -rivival of a new type of monument- the equestrian monument -Donatello called to the North by a figure the Gattamelata (Erasmo de Narni)- Condottiere (a mercenary soldier-but a leading general of an army) -Venice- naval power (but relied on condottiere/hired soldiers to do their work on mainland) -Bartolomeo Colleoni was the Condottiere for Venice -but first time of an equestrian monument of this type for a Condottiere (patron competing with the people of this type) -Donatello also in the competition Donatello's reference points from Antiquity: -Antiquity as a point of reference- in Donatello's time there were only 3 examples (only 2 survived now) -Marcus Aurelius in Rome -Four bronze horses (Horses of St. Mark's) in Venice -The Regisole of Pavia (destroyed by French troops) --> only engravings and drawings left Of more concern to the patron: -status of the person on horse back -Bernado Visconti and Cangrande della Scala (marble or limestone)--> came from NOBLE backgrounds (fought for their territories and became rulers of) --> victorious emperor's adding land to their kingdoms --> made with a medieval mentality -difference between Erasmus (a self-made man; fighting for money) -Bernado Visconti- in the style of a schivalic knight where Cangrande shown in a schivalic demeanor in a light-hearted vein in a different light (not in battle)--> but in jousting armour (still a fighter but more lighthearted- with a smile (military invested ruler and also a benevolent one through the mode of the monument) Donatello for Erasmus/Gattamelata: -takes leaps and bounds forwards by engrandizes Erasmus -traditionally, the Condottiere would request and the city would pay for, tended to be modest monuments -but for this its made of BRONZE (big and expensive) --> $$$$ -it was the Republic of Venice was paying for and he himself was putting the bill for this (speaks to the aspirations for himself in terms of the arts for his legacy) -to look to put himself on par with the figures of medieval times and antiquity -his costume is a hybrid--> armor on legs are gothic style contemporary armor -on his shoulders you can see there are classical motifs from ancient Roman armor (ceremonial armor) -his expression- no position to indulge in character building/projecting persona like Cangrande did -more somber image like Marcus Aurelius, even the gesture (holding baton to direct troops behind him) --> mirrors what you would see with Marcus Aurelisu or Regisole of Pavia -artistic element of Donatello looking back into antiquity --> TECHNICALLY- having a horse with a rider WITH BRONZE Verrocchio's Monument to Bartolomeo Colleoni (in Venice): -in Condottiere in a Battle won for the Venetian's -he also left money and instructions in his will to have a monument commissioned -in the cathedral--> they were weary of this (empirical and political and social implications--> aspirations of dominance) --> conflict in values with Venice (even symbolically) [like oil and water] --> so ended up outside the cathedral and dominates the square around it -patron has aspirations of showing empirical grandeur as expressed in Roman antiquity -also in rivalry with Donatello (one generation to the next) -injects his own artistry into the genre/type: rather than a somber look there is more of an expressive quality (fierce visage) -shoulders are sort of turned (to see the face more) --> body becomes an expression (chest puffed out and baton out --> like ready for battle) at the other angle -sense of capturing a psyche around the face/character statement of the legend of Bartolomeo (as victorious) -triangulating from antiquity and his predecessor (Donatello) -Sforza (in Milan)- proposal by Pollaiudolo (novel form at the time and winning design)- a rearing horse on hind legs as if to charge as he tramples his advisary (incredibly dynamic) -young Leonardo- did a study of this monument and writes a letter to the Duke about the engineering for it (he got the commission as the Sforza court artist) -Leo plays with both antiquitious types and dynamic types --> but he never finished -the prototype was also destroyed by French troops in Milan -but the realization would have been collasal -->legacy/identity for the patron but also an opportunity for artists to out do each other Baccio Pontelli, Sistine Chapel, Exterior View (1477-81): -the project was concieved thanks to the Dellelorve family as a ceremonial space for pope for special masses and ceremonies like election of a pope -decoration: became a dynastic space for the Dellelorve family for sixtus the fourth (started) -initial round of decoration executed- lots of layers (an A-Z or church theology) -Pope as religious and political leader -Julius the second (nephew of Sixtus the fourth) to bring in Michelangelo (undoing some of decor from before) -Popes wanting to leave their mark of the legacy -four Florentine's under employment of the Pope (leading edge artists and sent with the graces of Lorenzo the Magnificent) -friction between Medici and Lorenzo (assassination attempt on Lorenzo on Easter day at the Cathedral -->ambushed) -Pazzi Conspiracy- harboured hate for the Medici family -a medal with the portrait heads of the brothers of Lorenzo (part of the cathedral) -narrative part engraved (Juliano did not escape- stabbed to death) -Lorenzo escaped by slipping out of his cloak and locked himself in the sacristy -the rest of the Pazzo got hanged (as illustrated by Leonardo) -Botticelli was responsible for painting debauchery portraits of the hanged people on the external walls of the cathedral -Pope was indirectly involved (gave a tacid okay to the Pazzi family) --> peace need to be made (1480/year later) -1480- chapel was finished and needed to be decorated -14th and 15th C -lots of places left in ruins (partially because the papacy was not in Rome) -a French pope was elected in league with the French king and moved the papacy out of Rome to Avignon (for over a century and a half) -economic desolation left behind -infrastructure goes to siege -no workshops developed -by the time papacy comes back to Rome in 1430s/40s --> they had to look elsewhere for talent (looked towards Florence-->like a kiss and makeup gesture) -four artists from Florence -all from the workshop of Baroquo -they were like artistic diplomats (between Rome and Florence) -before Michelangelo re-did the decor -seen in Tognetti's documentation - new testament on the middle walls and the top windows were pictures of Jesus and then Peter as next and then next generation of popes from that -the ceiling was painted blue (expensive) with gold stars -lower walls- illusionistic paintings to look like tapestry paintings (fictive tapestries) -this was the first generation of artistry at the Sistine Chapel What Vasari said: -talks about these guys together but the leader was Botticelli (place of privilege) -idea of rivalry (competitors not coworkers) --> was how Vasari envisioned it to be like -Goffen (scholar)- there as nothing in historical document of Pope engaging in this competition to have a final victor for other commissions -the contract was ONE -cooperation was part of what had to be done to get the job done -Pope had a time frame which was probably why there were 4 artists and not to generate rivalry -done in about 5 or 6 months -probably brought with them a large workshop with them The Pictures themselves: -they HAD to coordinate (despite imprints of personality) -done thematically (old testament (Moses) and new testament (Christ)) -one long wall for life of Moses and another of the life of Christ and played off thematically across each other (big narrative cycles) (e.g. like in Aziz- a typological pairing (parallels of moments)) -Rosselli- Adoration of the Golden Calf across from Rosselli's Christ's Sermon on the Mount -Golden Calf- Moses on mountain praying and receives the ten commandments, Israelites worried and turned to a pagan Golden calf (another god) -Moses comes down and finds this -authority of the law from God himself as a foil against other gods (authority of the word of God and of Moses (chosen by God) to communicate His will) -paired across from Jesus's Sermon on the Mount- the meek will inherit the land- changing the rules (from God himself and divinely transmitted instruction) -when compared you can see that not only thematically, but also visually they are coordinated to the detail (from horizon line, to the composition itsel
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