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6 Cards in this Set

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Michael Ann Holly
"Witnessing and Annunciation:"
Discusses Robert Campin's "Merode Altarpiece" (1425-28) through Erwin Panofsky's framework of iconography, yet critiques it's deductive method as limiting the multi-faceted nature of artistic production and says Panofsky disregards the question of spectatorship.
Erwin Panofsky's "Iconology"
1. The Pre-Iconographic: 'factual' meaning - what objects are in the work.
2. The Iconographic: Characters and historical precedence - what subjects are shown.
3. The Iconological: "Intrinsic meaning or content," the "unconscious" message.
Sarah Blake McHam:
"Public Sculpture in Renaissance Florence"
Sculpture:
Location is important as well as medium (for its durability especially), and changing political climates change interpretation of public statues. The Republic of Florence and the powerful de Medici family used "symbolics of power" as propaganda and shaped citizens' and visitors' image of the city as the constant visibility, universally understood imagery, imposing physical presence, and durable materials of sculpture made it the most effective vehicle to convey the images that visualized and shaped Florentine identity in the minds of its citizens and visitors. Through sculpture and civic construction deliberately recalling ancient Roman precedent (such as Column-statues), Florence conveyed a notion of its mythic succession to Ancient Rome.
Dale Kent:
"The Palace: Measuring Self on the Urban Map"
Kent links building sights to opportunistic benefit and raises debates regarding the private/public nature of 16th Century households. Specifically, he focuses on the Medici Palace and asserts that patronage for propaganda did very much exist. Private palaces, he says, were seen as contributing to the honor of the city and conveying civic ideals and virtuous identity. It's been said by historians that the Florentine private palace, in a sense, sums up a civilization and thus the modern world due to social fragmentation, alienation and rampant consumerism. Richard Goldthwaite asserted that increasing privacy in 15th centurey Florence meant a withdrawal from public life. This is shown in the Paladian architecture of the 16th century too. Alas, however, much of the Medici palace had a semi-public function - a function which lesser scale private homes certainly did not.
Michael Baxandall:
"The Conditions of Trade"
"Money is very important in the history of art." Baxandall breaks down the motivation for Renaissance artistic patronage to three main motives: To serve the glory of God, to honour the city, and to commemorate the self. Paintings were noticeable and cheap (compared to statues, etc. that is). Contracts were drawn up for painters by economical patrons who specified subject matter, decided deadlines and insisted on the use of good qulity of colours with varying exactness and attention to detail. The first yeild of colour was a rich violet blue and was the best and most expensive - patrons paid by the quality of paint. The use of gold colour in paintings reflected a general movement in western Europe at the time towards a kind of selective inhibition about display - reflected in the actions of Girolamo Savonarola, the Dominican Priest who launched the famed Bonfire of the Vanities which burned books, paintings and other luxury items and preached against clerical corruption.
Jutta Sperling:
"Marvelous Venice: A Virgin City and Its Noble Body Politic"
Venice was a city very much seperate from Florence or Rome and was shrouded in mythic allure. Allegedly, Venice had a perfect distribution of political power and an immaculate nobility and ruling class which reflected an ideal utopian Republic. Reflecting great paradox the Venitian Myth lauded a supranatural beauty reflected by reform and perfection and praised grandiosity and pomp of public and private buildings. An oligarchy, Venice was "born" in its perfection on the same day that the Virgin Mary was immaculately conceived and was a city built of the sea which defied the laws of nature - suggesting divine intervention. Female body images dominated the discourse of Venice and while Mary expressed the original virginity of the perfect city and associated it with containment, purity, autonomy, and impenetrability. Venus, goddess of love and born of the sea, represented the city's beauty and riches gained through commerce but asserted procreative capabilites converse to Mary. Venice, it is said, always preserved its virginity as it had existed for over a millenium free of foreign control. Though these two allegories stood in direct opposition to each other as did the idea of a male dominated oligarchic state preaching democratic control and female identity.