ARTH(RS)335 Renaissance Art History Survey
Offered: Late Spring, Summer
This course acquaints students with important monuments and works of art of the later Middle Ages and Renaissance in Florence and the Florence area. All teaching is done on-site to allow students to see as much as possible during the short Late Spring or Summer term. The course begins with a study of the origins of the Renaissance in the architecture, sculpture, and painting of the later Middle Ages in Florence, Pisa, and Siena, much of which was also intimately connected with the civic identity of these rival towns during a period of rapid economic and political development and urban growth. The majority of the course concentrates on great Florentine early Renaissance masterpieces produced during the 1400s, when the city on the Arno seemed a new Athens and artistic patronage and humanistic learning reached a peak often nostalgically referred to by later generations as a “golden age.” The course concludes with a study of the inception of the High Renaissance in the late 1400s and early 1500s, primarily through the works of Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, and Raphael. The class visits the Cathedral, Baptistery, San Miniato, Opera del Duomo Museum, Orsanmichele, Palazzo Vecchio, Santa Croce, Santa Maria Novella, Brancacci Chapel at Santa Maria del Carmine, San Marco Museum, Refectory of Sant’Apollonia, Santa Trinità, Uffizi, Bargello, Hospital of Innocents, Santo Spirito, San Lorenzo (including Medici Chapels), and the Accademia. Saturday field trips are taken to Fiesole, Pisa, Lucca, Siena, San Gimignano, and either Ravenna or San Sepolcro, Monterchi, and Arezzo. It is recommended that students purchase for this course Frederick Hartt’s History of Italian Renaissance Art: Painting, Sculpture, Architecture. Course requirements include a final exam and a paper.
(See syllabi below. An updated syllabus will be posted at the beginning of each term.)