Free

'Perverse Images' - Professor Patricia Rubin

Actions and Detail Panel

Free

Event Information

Share this event

Date and time

Location

Location

Online event

Event description
This is an online event hosted by The Research Forum at The Courtauld

About this event

The platform and log in details will be sent to all registered attendees at least 48 hours before the event. Please note that registration closes 30 minutes before the event start time.

Important: If you have previously ever opted out of Eventbrite emails you will not receive the log in details for this event after registering. Please email researchforum@courtauld.ac.uk if you do not receive a confirmation email. Please check your junk folder before emailing us just in case it is in there.

Perverse Images: Monstrous Beauty and Monkey Business in Italian Art from Botticelli to Bronzino

In canto 29 of Dante’s Inferno a notorious alchemist, consigned to the depths of Hell among the fraudulent, boasts of having been a successful ape of nature (“di natura buona scimia”). The boast allies imitation with counterfeiting and points to the way that representational truth to nature is inherently false. This talk takes the presence of monkeys in Sandro Botticelli’s tondo showing the Adoration of the Magi (The National Gallery, London), Michelangelo’s sculpture of a languishing prisoner (Louvre), and a tapestry design by Bronzino (British Museum) as a starting point to consider the ways that mimesis is inflected in those works and by those artists. It also explores how the duplicitous nature of naturalism allows for the hybrid and monstrous to be the attractive offspring of art, confusing categorical distinctions between abject and admirable.

Patricia Rubin is a Visiting Scholar at the Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florence. She was professor, Deputy Director, and founding Head of the Research Forum at the Courtauld Institute, and Director of the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University. Her books include Giorgio Vasari. Art and History (1995), Images and Identity in Fifteenth-Century Florence (2007), and Seen from Behind: Perspectives on the Male Body in Italian Renaissance Art (2018). Recently, she has published on topics ranging from Art and the Masquerade of History” (2020) to “poetic design” in Botticelli’s illustrations to Dante’s Divine Comedy (2021).

Share with friends

Date and time

Location

Online event

Save This Event

Event Saved