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Italian Art and Architecture of the 16th Century. Art as science in Italy: Leonardo to Galileo
ARHA 224
Spring 2017
Section: 01  

In addition to key monuments of 16th-century Italian art and architecture, this course seeks to introduce students to some of the most important figures of the period: artists and architects--such as Leonardo, Raphael, Bronzino, Michelangelo, Titian, and Palladio; their princely and ecclesiastical patrons--such as Cosimo I de' Medici and Julius II; and their critics and biographers--such as Dolce and Vasari. Our aim will be to understand the complex artistic and architectural landscape of the period against the backdrop of shifting intellectual and religious trends, such as the Counter-Reformation. Class discussions will be based on close readings of primary sources and scholarly texts on a wide range of topics.

This semester the course takes up the thematic prism "Art as science in Italy: Leonardo to Galileo," to examine images, objects, monuments and practices from the history of art circa 1500-1600. We will explore a revaluation of the often opposed historical categories of Science and Art, together with their associated practices, artifacts, and institutions. By considering works of art (understood broadly as artisanal crafts, and the technical and fine arts) from the ambit of Leonardo da Vinci through Galileo Galilei, and their contemporaries, we investigate the possibility that the objective and rational pursuit of natural truths, and the subjective and emotional pursuit of human creativity, were intertwined in the unified Renaissance endeavor to understand and represent the radically changing early modern world, and the embodied experience of living in that world. Themes covered include embodied knowledge, visualizations of imperceptible natural phenomena, aesthetic objects as scientific instruments, the artist's studio as experimental laboratory, and the facilitation of scientific discovery and cultural exchange among diverse communities by means of the circulation of art objects.
Credit: 1 Gen Ed Area Dept: HA ART
Course Format: Lecture / DiscussionGrading Mode: Graded
Level: UGRD Prerequisites: None
Fulfills a Major Requirement for: (ARHA-MN)(ARHA)(ARST)(IDEA-MN)
Past Enrollment Probability: 90% or above

Last Updated on JUL-24-2024
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