Italian Renaissance

Italian Renaissance Portraits

This book considers the changing conception of portraiture in the sixteenth century. Focusing on paintings by Giorgione, Titian, Parmigianino, and Raphael, among others, Jodi Cranston explores the significance of the formal inventions that address the presence of the beholder, and how such a visual dialogue with the beholder encourages the viewer to perceive the portrait as open and responsive. Applying methods derived from literary theory and structural analysis, this study demonstrates how sixteenth-century portraits extend contemporary efforts to perceive and receive painting as a kind of poetry.

  • Offers new interpretations of well-known Renaissance paintings
  • Offers a methodology for considering the genre of portraiture as a whole, i.e. not time-specific
  • Offers analysis of hitherto unstudied poetry

Reviews & endorsements

"Cranston's book is beautifully illustrated, provocative, and courageous in its methodology, and illuminating in its analysis." Sixteenth Century Journal

"An ambitious book...It constitutes a novel contribution to the history of Renaissance portraiture." CAA Reviews

"Thoughtful reading and intense engagement...The book is also valuable for its rich bibliography of the literature on Renaissance portraiture." Renaissance Quarterly

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