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The Biography of the Object in Late Medieval and Renaissance Italy

ISBN: 978-1-4051-3955-7
156 pages
June 2006, Wiley-Blackwell
The Biography of the Object in Late Medieval and Renaissance Italy (1405139552) cover image
Material culture is not static: objects are created, used and re-used, sometimes for centuries, and their lives interact with those of the people who made and used them. The essays in this book discuss the ‘social lives’ of objects in late-medieval and renaissance Italy, ranging from maiolica, through sculpture and prostitutes’ jewellery, to miraculous painted images.
  • Demonstrates the continued life of these objects well past the deaths of their creators and patrons.
  • Contains a series of original contributions by young scholars, representing a broad range of approaches.
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    Note from the Series Editor.

    Preface.

    Introduction: Toothpicks and Green Hangings: Nicholas Penny.

    Part I: The Creation of the Object: Patricia L. Reilly.

    What You See Is What You Get: Colour In Italian Renaissance Istoriato Ware: Steve Wharton.

    ‘Sculpsit Cellinius Neptunam’: The Biography of the Neptune Fountain in Cellini’s Vita: Victoria C. Gardner Coates.

    Part II: The Life of the Object: Rupert Shepherd.

    Banquet Plate and Renaissance Culture: A Day in the Life: Valerie Taylor.

    For Use and Display: Selected Furnishings and Domestic Goods in Fifteenth-Century Florentine Interiors: James R. Lindow.

    Fragments from the ‘Life Histories’ of Jewellery belonging to Prostitutes inEarly-Modern Rome: Tessa Storey.

    Part III: The After-Life of the Object: Roberta J. M. Olson.

    The Icon of Santa Maria Maggiore, Rome: An Image and its Afterlife: Kirstin Noreen.

    One Pontile, Two Pontili: The Choir Screens of Modena Cathedral: Dawn Cunningham.

    The Afterlife of an Early Medieval Chapel: Giovanni Battista Ricci and Perceptions of the Christian Past in Post-Tridentine Rome: Ann Van Dijk.

    The Scrittoio Della Calliope in the Palazzo Vecchio: A Tuscan Museum: Andrea M. Gáldy.

    Index.

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    Roberta J.M. Olson is Professor Emeritus of Art History at Wheaton College in Massachusetts. She has worked as Curator of Drawings at the New-York Historical Society for seven years.


    Patricia L. Reilly is Assistant Professor of Art History at Swarthmore College. She is currently finishing a book on Raphael, Giorgio Vasari and the development of what she terms the ‘Florentine Visual Vernacular’.


    Rupert Shepherd is based in the Department of Western Art at the Ashmolean Museum. His previous employment included two years as a research fellow at the University of Sussex, working on the collaborative project The Material Renaissance: Costs and Consumption in Italy c.1300-1650.

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    • An investigation of the way objects are created, used and re-used in the context of Italian Renaissance art.
    • Discusses a variety of objects, from glassware, through sculpture and prostitutes’ jewellery, to miraculous painted images.
    • Demonstrates the continued life of these objects well past the deaths of their creators and patrons.
    • Contains a series of original contributions by young scholars, representing a broad range of approaches.
    See More
    “All in all, this is a useful, at times thought-provoking, and never less than informative collection of essays.” (Sixteenth Century Journal, Winter 2008)

    "A lot is packed into this slim volume; big claims are made for small objects, which can only be a good thing, and with any luck it will generate further debate about the methods by which we analyse ‘pre-modern’ things."
    Catherine Richardson, University of Birmingham

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