Renaissance Art

Course Schedule

Jan. 8: Introduction to the Class and Renaissance Art

  • Syllabus and Overview of the Course
  • Defining the term “Renaissance”
Resources

Jan. 11: Do we still need ‘The Renaissance’?

  • Questions, frameworks, and debates
  • Who, what, when, where, why, and how?
  • De-centering the canon

To-do before class:

  • *Keith Moxey, “Do We Still Need a Renaissance?” in Crossing Cultures: Conflict, Migration and Convergence. The Proceedings of the 32nd International Congress in the History of Art, ed. Jaynie Anderson. Carlton, Vic,: Miegunyah Press, Melbourne University Publishing, 2009, 233-8. Write your first 3-2-1 for the Moxey essay before class. Short but dense–it’s OK not to understand everything.
  • *Jerry Brotton, “The Global Renaissance,” ch. 1, in The Renaissance: A Very Short Introduction (Oxford: Oxford UP, 2006); previously published as The Renaissance Bazaar: From the Silk Road to Michelangelo (Oxford: Oxford UP, 2003). Write a 3-2-1 before class.

Jan. 15: Fourteenth-Century Precedents**

    • State and private patronage in the Trecento
  • Emergence of humanism
  • Development of naturalism and new focus on the artist
  • Maniera greca and materials of the Trecento
  • Spanish Gothicisms
  • Trade and interaction

To-do before class:

Read and watch (NOTE: these types of readings and videos are the ones that the brief reading quizzes will focus on–general ideas, I highly recommend taking notes on the readings/videos because oftentimes we will not simply “go over them” again during class time, but will apply what you’ve learned. Here is how I might organize notes for this day’s readings: I. Intro to Late Gothic period and art, II. Florence in the Late Gothic Period, which would include Cimabue and Giotto, III. Siena in the Late Gothic, IV. Materials: Tempera paint):

Introduction to Late Gothic period and art

Florence in the Late Gothic period

Siena in the Late Gothic period

Materials

*Read Anne Dunlop, “Materials, Origins and the Nature of Early Italian Painting,” in Crossing Cultures: Conflict, Migration and Convergence: The Proceedings of the 32nd International Congress in the History of Art, ed. Jaynie Anderson (The Miegunyah Press), pp. 472–76. Write a 3-2-1 before class.

Jan. 18: Ars Nova, the Northern Renaissance, and Altarpieces**

  • Fifteenth-century innovations
  • Oil painting and materials of the North
  • Realism and Religion: Public Devotional Imagery in Northern Europe
  • Style and religious ideology
  • Intimate visions of Virgin and Child

To-do before class:

Read and watch:

Introduction to Northern Renaissance art and history

Materials

Religious Altarpieces

Also, read:

  • *Craig Harbison, “Van Eyck’s Realism,” in Jan van Eyck: The Play of Realism 2nd ed. (London: Reaktion, 2012), pp. 17–23. (Found via Payson as an e-book; you can download the chapter as a PDF too). Write a 3-2-1 before class.

Jan. 22: Exchange, Commerce, and Modern Devotion**

  • Donors as witnesses
  • Secular arts and portraiture
  • exchanges across northern and southern Europe

To-do before class:

Read and watch:

Portraiture

The Arnolfini Portrait

Also read:

Jan. 25: The Challenge of Nature and the Antique in Early Italian Renaissance Art**

  • Florence: Commune and Guild
  • Perspective and the New Style
  • Alberti’s Treatise on painting
  • Connections between Italy and Flanders
  • Humanist iconography and secular and classical themes

To-do before class:

Read and watch:

Introduction to Florence and quattrocento art

The development of linear perspective

Nature and the Antique in quattrocento art

Also read:

  • *[Primary Source): Alberti, On Painting, read Prologue, and Book 2, lines [35]–[55]. Write a 3-2-1 before class.

Jan. 29: Medici Domination and Courtly Arts in Italy**

  • Florence: The Medici and Political Propaganda
  • Humanist iconography and secular and classical themes
  • Courtly arts of Ferrara, Urbino, and Mantua
  • The culture of the studiolo

To-do before class:

Read and watch:

Medici patronage

Other courts and affiliated arts and artists

Feb. 1: Iberian Ways in the Fifteenth Century: Itinerant Artists and the Crossroads of Europe**

  • Spanish “Eclecticism”

To-do before class:

Read:

Introduction to Renaissance Spanish art and artists

Do:

  • LOOK CLOSELY at this selection of images before class, and ANALYZE THEM in as much detail as you can. Take notes in a google doc and put it into your folder.

Feb. 5: Venice: Affirming the Past and Present, and Interactions with the Islamic World**

  • Heir of East and West
  • Venice vs. Florence
  • Islamic influences
  • Italian Artists and the Ottomans

To-do before class:

Read and watch:

Introduction to Venice

Materials

Setting the Stage for early Renaissance Venice

Venice and interactions with Islamic culture

*“Bellini in Istanbul,” in Bellini and the East.  New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2005, 98-129. Write a 3-2-1 before class.

Feb. 8: Midterm

Feb. 12: Nature, Disegno, and Beauty: The Beginnings of the High Renaissance in Italy**

  • Sforza Milan
  • Florence: The Renewed Republic
  • Early Renaissance vs. High Renaissance
  • The Canon, and the Great Master Model of Art History

To-do before class:

Read and watch

Introduction to High Renaissance Italian art

Leonardo da Vinci

Michelangelo

Raphael

Also, read:

  • *[PS] Giorgio Vasari, Lives of the Artists, excerpts, in Robert Klein and Henri Zerner, eds., Italian Art 1500-1600: Sources and Documents (Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, 1966), pp. 73–85. Write a 3-2-1 before class.
  • *William E. Wallace, “The Artist as Genius,” in A Companion to Renaissance and Baroque Art, ed. Babette Bohn and James M. Saslow (Wiley and Sons, 2013), pp. 151–167.  Write a 3-2-1 before class.

Feb. 15: CLASS OFF FOR MUSEUM TRIP (to be scheduled)

Feb. 19: The Vatican and Papal Politics in the High Renaissance: Pope Julius II**

  • Sistine Chapel and the Stanze della Segnatura frescoes
  • Papal patronage

To-do before class:

Read and watch

Introduction to the Renaissance papacy and papal patronage at the Vatican

Raphael and Michelangelo at the Vatican

Also read:

Feb. 22: Studying Nature and Humans in Sixteenth-Century Northern Europe and Beyond**

  • Northern artists adopting “Southern” style and iconography
  • Relationship with Nature and the Cosmos

To-do before class:

Read and watch

Introduction to the Northern Renaissance in the 16th century

Albrecht Durer

Printmaking

Also read:

Optional

Feb. 25–March 1: SPRING BREAK (No classes)

Have a great break!

March 5: Colorito and Poesia: High Renaissance Art in Venice and Relationships with Foreigners**

  • Style, iconography and patronage in Cinquecento Venice
  • Poesia, secular paintings, and erotic themes

To-do before class:

Read and watch

Introduction to sixteenth-century Venice and colorito vs. disegno

Specific examples, esp. Giorgione and Titian

Do:

  • LOOK CLOSELY at this image before class, and ANALYZE it in as much detail as you can. Do you think, after what you’ve read, that this image is from High Renaissance Venice or not? State your case! Take notes in a google doc and put it into your folder.

Optional

March 8: Reformation and Reaction**

  • Christianity before the Reformation
  • Reformation in Germany

To-do before class:

Read and watch

Introduction to the Reformation

Artworks that respond to the Reformation

Do:

  • LOOK CLOSELY at this image before class, and ANALYZE it in as much detail as you can. Do you think, after what you’ve read, that this image is from northern Europe before or after the Reformation? State your case! Take notes in a google doc and put it into your folder.

March 12: The Maniera: An Alternative to the High Renaissance?**

  • Rome of Paul III
  • Defining “Mannerism”

To-do before class:

Read

Introduction to Mannerism

Also read:

  • *Heather Graham, “Artifice and Interiority: The Image of Grief in the Age of Reform,” in Vanishing Boundaries: Scientific Knowledge and Art Production in the Early Modern Era, ed. A. Victor Coonin and Lilian H. Zirpolo (WAPACC, 2015), pp. 25–50. Write a 3-2-1 before class.
  • If you would like to see better quality images in color, you can here.

OPTIONAL

Examples of artworks that display la maniera

March 15: Gender Conventions & The Renaissance Nude

  • Male and Female Portraiture
  • Self-Portraiture and Identity Politics
  • Discussion of Gender and the Canon

To-do before class:

Read: *James M. Saslow, “The Desiring Eye: Gender, Sexuality, and the Visual Arts,” in in A Companion to Renaissance and Baroque Art, ed. Babette Bohn and James M. Saslow (Wiley and Sons, 2013), pp. 127–148. Write a 3-2-1 before class.

March 19: Sixteenth-Century Iberian Peninsula and the Spanish Court of Philip II**

  • El Escorial
  • Titian, and other Court Portraits
  • The Expansion of Hispanic Culture, and the Age of Exploration

Reading:

  • SH: El Escorial
  • *Larry Silver, “Europe’s Global Vision,” in A Companion to Renaissance and Baroque Art, ed. Babette Bohn and James M. Saslow (London: Blackwell-Wiley, 2013), 85–105. Write a 3-2-1 before class.

March 22: Iberian Encounters with America**

  • Renaissance ideas in the Americas
  • The Creation of Spanish Colonial Culture

Reading

Do:

  • LOOK CLOSELY at this image before class, and ANALYZE it in as much detail as you can. How would you describe it formally? In what ways does it compare to art that we’ve seen or read about? Try to compare it directly to specific works where possible. Take notes in a google doc and put it into your folder.

March 26: Iberian Encounters with America II

  • New arts for a new world
  • American influences on Europe

Reading:

  • *Lauren G. Kilroy-Ewbank, “Fashioning a Prince for All the World to See: Guaman Poma’s Self-Portraits in the Nueva coronica,The Americas: 75, no. 1 (Jan 2018): 47–94. (Available via Payson as e-article or downloadable PDF–I find the PDF much easier!) Write a 3-2-1 before class.
  • I will be showing you all the various stages of this article too, from a paper in graduate school, to an M.A. Thesis, to an expanded research project, to the many, many drafts and revisions before it was published.

March 29: PAYSON Special Collections visit

  • Visit to Payson Special Collections

Reading

  • What is an emblem? (We will see the Alciati emblemata)
  • Brief history of the Geneva Bible (which we will see)
  • We will meet at the seminar room in Payson Special Collections (second floor, near the Surfboard Room)
    • Please note that you will not be able to use anything but a pencil, and we will leave our belongings in a locked room

Apr 2: African Presence in Renaissance Art & Wunderkammern, Collecting, Gifting, and the Politics of Display

  • Black Africans in European Renaissance art
  • European encounters with peoples across the African continent
  • trade, colonization, cross-cultural influences
  • Terminology and expanding the “Renaissance”
  • Collecting and Display, and Trade and Display
  • Exotica, cabinets of curiosities

Reading:

  • *Kate Lowe, “The Global Population of Renaissance Lisbon: Diversity and Its Entanglements,” in The Global City: On the Streets of Renaissance Lisbon, ed. Annemarie Jordan Gschwend and Kate Lowe (London: Paul Holberton, 2015), pp. 57–75. Write a 3-2-1 before class.
  • *Elena FitzPatrick Sifford, “Mexican Manuscripts and the First Images of Africans in the Americas,” Ethnohistory 66, no. 2 (2019): 223–248. Write a 3-2-1 before class.
  • *Lia Markey, Imagining the Americas in Medici Florence (University Park, PA: The Penn State UP, 2016), “Ch. 1, The New World and Italy in the early sixteenth century,” pp. 7–15; “Ch. 6, “Between Ethnography and Fantasy in Ferdinando’s New World,” pp. 79–91; and “Conclusion: Vicarious Conquest,” pp. 159–163. Write a 3-2-1 before class.

Apr 5: Encounters with South and East Asia

  • Renaissance interactions with Asia
  • Jesuits, trade, import/export market
  • print culture

Reading:

Also read:

  • *Gauvin Alexander Bailey, “The Indian Conquest of Catholic Art: The Mughals, the Jesuits, and Imperial Mural Painting,” Art Journal 57, no. 1 (Spring 1998): 24–30. [accessed via Jstor via Payson] Write a 3-2-1 before class.

Apr 9: Art, People, and the Counter-Reformation Church**

  • Catholic Reform or the Counter Reformation
  • Problematic Iconography vs. Acceptable Iconography
  • The Council of Trent
  • The Jesuits

Reading

Apr 12: Renaissance/Baroque: Towards a New Visual Realm

  • New Genres of Art and a Revolutionary Style

Readings:

Apr 16: DAY OFF FOR GUEST LECTURE earlier in the semester

Use this day to study and finish your project!

Apr 19: Presentations

  • ***Student presentations of digital projects today***

Apr 22–25: FINALS WEEK

  • Final Exam: 4/23, 1:30 PM–4:00 PM
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