Dictionary of Art and Artists



 

 


History of

Architecture and Sculpture

 
 

 

 
 

 
 

CONTENTS:

 
 

PART ONE
THE ANCIENT WORLD
PREHISTORIC ART
EGYPTIAN ART

ANCIENT NEAR EASTERN ART
AEGEAN ART
GREEK ART
ETRUSCAN ART
ROMAN ART
EARLY CHRISTIAN AND BYZANTINE ART

PART TWO
THE MIDDLE AGES
EARLY MEDIEVAL ART
ROMANESQUE ART
GOTHIC ART

PART THREE
THE RENAISSANCE THROUGH THE ROCOCO
LATE GOTHIC
THE EARLY RENAISSANCE IN ITALY
THE HIGH RENAISSANCE IN ITALY
MANNERISM AND OTHER TRENDS
THE RENAISSANCE IN THE NORTH
THE BAROQUE IN ITALY AND SPAIN
THE BAROQUE IN FLANDERS AND HOLLAND
THE BAROQUE
THE ROCOCO

PART FOUR
THE MODERN WORLD
NEOCLASSICISM AND ROMANTICISM
REALISM AND IMPRESSIONISM
POST-IMPRESSIONISM, SYMBOLISM, AND ART NOUVEAU

PART FIVE
TWENTIETH-CENTURY
TWENTIETH-CENTURY SCULPTURE
TWENTIETH-CENTURY ARCHITECTURE


INDEX
FIGURES
 

 
 

 
 

CHAPTER FOUR

 

MANNERISM AND OTHER TRENDS
 

PAINTING
SCULPTURE - Part 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11
ARCHITECTURE - Part 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
 
 


SCULPTURE
 


Giovanni da Bologna


Cellini, Primaticcio, and the other Italians employed by Francis I at Fontainebleau made Mannerism the dominant style in mid-sixteenth-century France.

Their influence went far beyond the royal court. It reached Jean de Bologne (1529-1608), a gifted young sculptor from Douai in northern France, who went to Italy about 1555 for further training. He stayed and became, under the Italianized name of Giovanni Bologna, the most important sculptor in Florence during the last third of the century. His over-lifesize marble group. The Rape of the Sabine Woman (fig. 697), won particular acclaim, and still has its place of honor near the Palazzo Vecchio.

The subject, drawn from the legends of ancient Rome, seems an odd choice for statuary. The city's founders, an adventurous band of men from across the sea, so the story goes, tried vainly to find wives among their neighbors, the Sabines, and resorted at last to a trick. Having invited the entire Sabine tribe into Rome for a peaceful festival, they fell upon them with arms, took the women away by force, and thus ensured the future of their race. Actually, the artist designed the group with no specific subject in mind, to silence those critics who doubted his ability as a monumental sculptor in marble. He selected what seemed to him the most difficult feat, three figures of contrasting character united in a common action. Their identities were disputed among the learned connoisseurs of the day, who finally settled on The Ęŕđĺ of the Sahine Woman as the most suitable title.

Here, then, is another artist who is noncommittal about subject matter, although his unconcern had a different motive from Veronese's. Like Cellini's, Bologna's purpose was virtuoso display. His self-imposed task was to carve in marble, on a massive scale, a sculptural composition that was to be seen not from one but from all sides; this had hitherto been attempted only in bronze and on a much smaller scale (see fig. 618). He has solved this purely formal problem, but at the cost of insulating his group from the world of human experience. These figures, spiraling upward as if confined inside a tall, narrow cylinder, perform their well-rehearsed choreographic exercise with ease; yet, like much Hellenistic sculpture (compare fig. 215), it is ultimately devoid of emotional meaning. We admire their discipline but we find no trace of genuine pathos.



697. Giovanni da Bologna. The Rape of the Sahine Woman. Completed 1583. Marble, height 4.1 m. Loggia dei Lanzi, Florence

 


697. Giovanni da Bologna. The Rape of the Sahine Woman. Completed 1583. Marble, height 4.1 m. Loggia dei Lanzi, Florence




697. Giovanni da Bologna. The Rape of the Sahine Woman. Completed 1583. Marble, height 4.1 m. Loggia dei Lanzi, Florence




697. Giovanni da Bologna. The Rape of the Sahine Woman. Completed 1583. Marble, height 4.1 m. Loggia dei Lanzi, Florence




697. Giovanni da Bologna. The Rape of the Sahine Woman. Completed 1583. Marble, height 4.1 m. Loggia dei Lanzi, Florence




Giovanni da Bologna. Rape of the Sabines
c. 1585
Bronze, height 98,2 cm
Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna


 

 


Giambologna

Giambologna, also called Giovanni da Bologna, or Jean Boulogne (born 1529, Douai, Spanish Netherlands [now in France]—died Aug. 13, 1608, Florence [Italy]), preeminent Mannerist sculptor in Italy during the last quarter of the 16th century.

First trained under Jacques Dubroeucq, a Flemish sculptor who worked in an Italianate style, Giambologna went to Rome about 1550, where his style was influenced by Hellenistic sculpture and the works of Michelangelo. Settling in Florence (1552), where he spent the rest of his life, he attracted the notice of Francesco de’ Medici, for whom many of his most important works were made. Among his earliest Florentine works were a bronze Bacchus, later placed on a fountain in the Borgo San Jacopo, and a bronze Venus, made for the Villa di Castello and now at the Villa Medicea della Petraia, near Florence.

The Fountain of Neptune at Bologna (1563–66), which emulated Michelangelo’s Victory, established his reputation. The full-scale plaster model of this work (Accademia, Florence), initially set up with the Victory in the Palazzo Vecchio, was replaced in 1570 by the marble version, now in the Museo Nazionale. His Samson and a Philistine (1567; Victoria and Albert Museum, London) displays violence and anguish in a masterfully contrived composition that recalls such complex Hellenistic pieces as the Laocoön. Rape of a Sabine (1579–83; Loggia dei Lanzi, Florence), while uncluttered and monumental, is even more complex. The composition is subtly designed so that it can be viewed from any side with equal effect. In his fountain Mercury (c. 1580; Bargello, Florence) Giambologna uses the shimmering play of light on the figure’s smooth surface to enhance the effect of fleetness. His bronze equestrian portrait of Cosimo I de’ Medici (1587–94; Piazza della Signoria, Florence) is also notable.

Giambologna enjoyed great popularity as a maker of garden sculpture for the Boboli Gardens, Florence (Fountain of Oceanus, 1571–76; Venus of the Grotticella, 1573), and for the Medici villas at Pratolino (the colossal Apennine, 1581), Petraia, and Castello. He was also a prolific manufacturer of bronze statuettes. In addition to his secular commissions, Giambologna was responsible for a large number of religious sculptures, which include (in marble) the fine Altar of Liberty in Lucca cathedral (1577–79) and several bronze reliefs.

An Italian sculptor in all but birth, Giambologna transformed the Florentine Mannerism of the mid-16th century into a style of European significance. His ability to capture fleeting expression and the vivacity and sensual delight of his mature style anticipate the Baroque sculpture of Gian Lorenzo Bernini. For three centuries his work was more generally admired than that of any sculptor except Michelangelo.

 

 

 


Giovanni da Bologna. Apollo
Bronze
Palazzo Vecchio, Florence


Giovanni da Bologna. Venus
1573
Marble
Grotto Buontalenti, Boboli Gardens, Florence


Giovanni da Bologna. Hercules and the Centaur
1600
Marble, height 269 cm
Loggia dei Lanzi, Florence




Giovanni da Bologna. Hercules and the Centaur
1600
Marble, height 269 cm
Loggia dei Lanzi, Florence




Giovanni da Bologna. Samson and Philistine
1500-50
Marble, Italy





Giovanni da Bologna. Nessus and Deianira




Giovanni da Bologna. Florence Triumphant over Pisa




Giovanni da Bologna. Ocean




Giovanni da Bologna. Astronomy.
Florence, Palazzo Vecchio




Giovanni da Bologna. Architecture




Giovanni da Bologna. Architecture




Giovanni da Bologna. Grotticelli Venus, 1573
Giovanni da Bologna. Cesarini Venus, 1585




Giovanni da Bologna. Florence Victorious over Pisa

 
 

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