By Maarten Delbeke
Distinctive between early glossy artists, the Baroque painter, sculptor, and architect Gianlorenzo Bernini used to be the topic of 2 monographic biographies released almost immediately after his loss of life in 1680: one by means of the Florentine gourmand and author Filippo Baldinucci (1682), and the moment by way of Bernini's son, Domenico (1713). This interdisciplinary choice of essays by means of historians of artwork and literature marks the 1st sustained exam of the 2 biographies, at the beginning as texts. a considerable introductory essay considers every one biography's writer, genesis, and foundational position within the learn of Bernini. 9 essays combining art-historical examine with insights from philology, literary historical past, and paintings and literary conception provide significant new insights into the multifarious connections among biography, paintings historical past, and aesthetics, inviting readers to reconsider Bernini's lifestyles, paintings, and milieu.
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Extra resources for Bernini's Biographies: Critical Essays
Such an effect has to do with borrowing a language as a means of conferring status on artists (rather than claiming that they are saints). ”185 A second and related point is that biographies of famous people and hagiographies are motivated differently. Hagiography had a very specific, juridical motivation because it played an acknowledged role in building the case for the legal definition of someone as a saint. In addition, unlike the artist’s life, the saint’s was also meant to demonstrate the truths of Catholic dogma.
This institutional dimension, writ large, is another aspect of the hagiographic effect, perhaps most visible in Domenico’s structuring of his Vita by papacy, portraying Bernini as a support and subject of successive popes. The third point is that hagiography was not a series of exaggerations, as is often implied in the use of the term, but was in fact the avant-garde of history writing in the seventeenth century.
This was D’Onofrio’s operating assumption but other, less sneaky motives are equally if not more imaginable. 138 Indeed, the controversy aroused over the renewal of the thesis of Florentine supremacy, a few years later, points to the constitutive association with Baldinucci of the bias the Bernini clan is thought to have wanted to capture for Bernini. Beyond the political dimension of Baldinucci’s authorship (why he was chosen, his network of political connections), it will be revealing about the text itself to ask what Baldinucci’s other publications and his professional trajectory explain about the Bernini Vita.