Giorgio Vasari: Art and History

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9780300049091: Giorgio Vasari: Art and History

Vasari's Lives of the Painters, Sculptors, and Architects are and always have been central texts for the study of the Italian Renaissance. They can and should be read in many ways. Since their publication in the mid-16th century, they have been a source of both information and pleasure. Their immediacy after more than four hundred years is a measure of Vasari's success. He wished the artists of his day, himself included, to be famous. He made the association of artistry and genius, of renaissance and the arts so familiar that they now seem inevitable. In this book Patricia Rubin argues that both the inevitability and the immediacy should be questioned. To read Vasari without historical perspective results in a limited and distorted view of The Lives. Rubin shows that Vasari had distinct ideas about the nature of his task as a biographer, about the importance of interpretation, judgement, and example - about the historian's art. Vasari's principles and practices as a writer are examined here, as are their sources in Vasari's experiences as an artist. The opening chapters introduce Vasari, outlining the events of his career and examining his presentation of himself through Renaissance conventions. We cannot know the man, Giorgio Vasari, but we can know about how Vasari as a man of his period formed and formulated his ideals and how they were expressed in his painting and writing. The Renaissance notion of history as an exemplary and rhetorical art is discussed in subsequent chapters, which also define the biographical structure Vasari adopted and describe its articulation in a specific and highly nuanced vocabulary. Three Lives have been chosen for analysis to demonstrate in detail how Vasari learned about his fellow artists and their artistry and then guided his readers to an informed appreciation of their accomplishments. Giotto, Donatello, and Raphael have been selected as representing each of the three ages Vasari used to subdivide the past in order to show the progress of the arts from their imperfection in Giotto's day to their glorious perfection in Vasari's time. In this major contribution to Renaissance studies, Rubin demonstrates that with The Lives, Vasari wanted to live beyond his time, which he has; but his voice is of his time and to appreciate that is to gain a richer understanding of the messages of his book.

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From Library Journal:

Though only modestly talented, Vasari won immortality through the publication of his Lives of the Artists. In her erudite but accessible analysis of that magnum opus, Rubin lovingly and brilliantly elucidates the essence of the writer's achievement. In addition to eliciting the substance of his canonic figures from his own youthful experiences, Rubin also educes an ideal self-portrait, which is implicit in the Lives. Not only are Vasari's research methodology, historiographic models, aesthetic predispositions, and relationship to the contemporary literary context exactingly exhumed but the broader historical and conceptual vision of the expanded edition of 1568 is cannily exfoliated. The elaborated studies of the lives of Giotto, Donatello, and Raphael make manifest Vasari's schema of artistic progress and his notion of the relationship of the artist's character and stylistic personality. Collections concerned with Renaissance historiography and art criticism will require this volume.?Robert Cahn, Fashion Inst. of Technology, New York
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Rubin, Patricia Lee
Editore: Yale University Press (1995)
ISBN 10: 0300049099 ISBN 13: 9780300049091
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Descrizione libro Yale University Press, 1995. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. Codice libro della libreria P110300049099

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Patricia Lee Rubin
Editore: Yale University Press (1995)
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(Rumford, ME, U.S.A.)
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Descrizione libro Yale University Press, 1995. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. book. Codice libro della libreria 0300049099

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