Fra Angelico's fresco paintings at the Dominican priory of San Marco are among the best-loved works of Italian art, yet they have been oddly neglected by art historians. In this book, William Hood analyzes the newly cleaned frescoes at San Marco, setting them against the background of 15th-century Florentine artistic, political, cultural, and religious history. Hood discusses the ideals, daily rituals, and pictorial traditions of the Dominican order - especially the reformed or Observant branch to which Fra Angelico belonged. He presents new material on traditions of religious art, altarpiece design and imagery, and the decoration of chapter rooms and cloisters. Hood compares Angelico's work at San Marco to earlier Dominican altarpieces and to Angelico's other alterpieces for Dominican buildings in Siena, Pisa, Prato, and Florence, pointing out both the traditional elements and the novelty of the San Marco altarpiece. Similarly, by comparing San Marco to other Florentine fresco cycles, he illuminates the originality of the cloister and chapter-house of San Marco. Hood's discussion of San Marco follows and itinerary through the church and adjoining convent buildings, beginning with the high altarpiece and ending with the corridor paintings - especially the exquisite "Annunciation" in the dormitory corridor. Throughout, he analyzes Angelico's use of colour, his technique in fresco and tempera, the way he solved specific visual problems and how his paintings affected 15th-century viewers.
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Sponsored by the Medici, Fra Angelico's paintings for the priory of San Marco are among the foremost monuments in early Renaissance Florence. This extraordinary cycle, though stylistically au courant, emerges out of a tradition of sacred subject matter favored by the artist's Observant Dominican order. Hood's masterful study persuasively reconstructs the link between the paintings and the institutional spirituality articulated in the order's liturgical habits and literary traditions. While rejecting the notion of a unified iconographic program, the author ably demonstrates the formal and didactic intentions that underlie Angelico's artistic and intellectual choices. Hood's profound understanding of the Observants' religious mentality and its committed expression in the artist's work are complemented by a comprehensive grasp of the art historical context and a keen ability to articulate the paintings' nuances of style. An exquisite corpus of reproductions further enhances an exemplary scholarly labor. Highly recommend ed.
- Robert Cahn, Fashion Inst. of Technology, New York
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Descripción Yale University Press. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. 0300057342 New Condition. Nº de ref. de la librería NEW7.0070116
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Descripción Yale University Press, 1993. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. book. Nº de ref. de la librería M0300057342
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