Baker & Taylor Provides brief biographies and artwork analyses that explore the Renaissance period in sculpture
Blackwell North Amer The Renaissance was a golden age for sculpture, one in which the modern conception of the world gained its first artistic outlines. The medieval definition of the themes and functions of art was crucially expanded, and the creative preoccupations with classical antiquity and the renewed study of nature found their fullest expression. As a result, Renaissance sculpture, and particularly the work of Donatello, whose outstanding creative powers were already recognized and praised by his contemporaries, has remained one of the most fruitful and fascinating areas of art-historical research. This lavish new volume, which covers the period from 1400 to 1490, represents the most comprehensive documentation of early Italian Renaissance sculpture to date. Its sixty-three exceptional colorplates alone distinguish it from other publications on the subject; most of the photographs were made specifically for this book, and even the most recently restored works are shown in their present state to reflect the artists' intentions as truly as possible. Within these pages an authentic picture of the period unfolds - its intellectual and philosophical foundations are discussed and its artistic triumphs described and illustrated. Author Joachim Poeschke, professor of art history at the University of Dusseldorf and the author of numerous publications on Italian art of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, has based his text on the latest research. While his central focus is on the work of Donatello, he also illuminates the beginnings of Renaissance sculpture in Florence, its further development in Tuscany and the rest of Italy, the new artistic goals and their theoretical formulation, and the relationships between patron and artist, convention and artistic freedom. The invaluable documentary section includes all the work of Donatello, as well as that of Ghiberti. Other important sculptors, among them Jacopo della Quercia, Nanni de Banco, Luca della Robbia, Francesco Laurana, and Verrocchio, are featured as well. Each sculpture shown in the documentary section is accompanied by a critical appraisal, and brief biographies of the artists are provided. With an extensive bibliography, Donatello and His World is an essential reference for all scholars, students, and lovers of Italian Renaissance art.