The Artist as Reader: On Education and Non-Education of Early Modern Artists


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Reading is apparently the greatest proof of refinement when viewed within the context of the social climb of the visual artist. It is only as reader that the artist can participate in the exclusive culture of clerics, humanists, rulers and courtiers. How did it come about that such a figure was integrated into the general history-of-knowledge context of research on the early modern period – in order to outline what artists’ reading specifically entails. Based on the history of knowledge, the contributions to this volume will then correspondingly elucidate various aspects of how, in the early modern period, artists’ education, knowledge, reading and libraries were related to the ways in which they presented themselves.The volume endeavours at long last to go beyond merely publishing inventories by investigating the problem of artists’ libraries with a fundamentally stronger emphasis on a discourse-analytical and history-of-knowledge approach.

Contributors include: Rainer Bayreuther, Maria Berbara, Cécile Beuzelin, Heiko Damm, Annette de Vries, Kelly Donahue-Wallace, Angela Dressen, Lex Hermans, Eckhard Leuschner, Alexander Marr, Martin Papenbrock, Tico Seifert, Eva Struhal, Michael Thimann, Huub van der Linden, Elsje van Kessel, Iris Wenderholm, and Claus Zittel.

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Index Nominum
Pages: 511–521
Heiko Damm is a research assistant at the Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz. He received his PhD in Art history from the Freie Universität Berlin with a dissertation on "Santi di Tito (1536-1603) und die Reform des Altarbildes in Florenz."

Michael Thimann (PhD Freie Universität Berlin, 2000) holds a Full-Professorship for the History of Art at the University of Passau (Germany). Among his research foci are artistic knowledge and the education of artists from the fifteenth to the nineteenth centuries, and the reception of Ovidian mythology in the early modern period

Claus Zittel, Ph.D. (1999) in Philosophy, teaches German literature and philosophy at the Universities of Berlin (Freie Universität), Frankfurt am Main, and Olsztyn (Poland). He is Member of the Editorial Board of "Intersections". He has published extensively on Cultural History of Science, Literature and Knowledge, including "Theatrum philosophicum. Descartes und die Rolle ästhetischer Formen in der Wissenschaft (2009)".
‘’This excellent volume, part of Intersections series of Interdisciplinary Studies in Early Modern Culture, focuses on the reading and writing habits of premodern artists who vary in profession from painters and architect designers to musicians […] this book makes a substantive contribution to the intellectual history of the early modern period. […] The book’s dynamic approach to this subject makes it appealing to historians of a wide range of disciplines including art, architecture design, literature and music’’.
Lisandra Estevez, Winston-Salem State University. In: Sixteenth Century Journal, Vol. 45, No. 1, 2014, pp. 175-177.
Notes on the Editors
Notes on the Contributors
List of Illustrations

Introduction: Close and Extensive Reading among Artists in the Early Modern Period HEIKO DAMM, MICHAEL THIMANN, CLAUS ZITTEL


1. Jacopo Pontormo: A Scholarly Craftsman CÉCILE BEUZELIN

2. Reading with acutezza: Lorenzo Lippi’s Literary Culture EVA STRUHAL

3. Gillis van Coninxloo. Der Künstler als Leser MARTIN PAPENBROCK

4. Pieter Lastman als Leser. Eine Künstlerbibliothek und ihre Nutzung CHRISTIAN TICO SEIFERT

5. The President as a Reader: Sir Joshua Reynolds and Book IRIS WENDERHOLM


6. Artists and Knowledge in Sixteenth-century Venice ELSJE VAN KESSEL

7. Reading Rhetoric: Oratory in Gian Paolo Lomazzo’s Treatises on the Art of Painting LEX HERMANS

8. Hondius meets Van Mander: The Cultural Appropriation of the First Netherlandish Book on the Visual Arts System of Knowledge in a Series of Artist’s Portraits ANETTE DE VRIES

9. Catonem narrare: Charles Le Brun as Reader and Painter of a Stoic’s Suicide ECKHARD LEUSCHNER

10. The Collaborative Authorship of Pictorial Invention in Seventeenth-century Italy: Artist, Adviser, and Patron at Palazzo Carignano HUUB VAN DER LINDEN


11. Peripatetici pariter et Platonici: Poliziano and Pico della Mirandola and the Library of the Badia Fiesolana ANGELA DRESSEN

12. Nascentes morimur: Francisco da Holanda as Artist, Reader and Writer MARIA BERBARA

13. Commonplaces, and Technical Knowledge: The Architect-Engineer as Reader ALEXANDER MARR

14. Bach – Mattheson. Zwei deutsche Komponisten und ihre Bücher RAINER BAYREUTHER

15. An Evangelist of Taste: The Book Collection of Jerónimo Antonio Gil KELLY DONAHUE WALLACE

Index Nominum
All those interested in intellectual history, Art history, the history of Book, and the history of Reading, as well as early modern scholars
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