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The Italian Renaissance Imagery of Inspiration

The Italian Renaissance Imagery of Inspiration
Metaphors of Sex, Sleep, and Dream

  • Date Published: April 2004
  • availability: Unavailable - out of print November 2012
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9780521821605


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About the Authors
  • In this book, Maria Ruvoldt traces the development of the pictorial vocabulary of divine inspiration, examining how themes of spiritual, intellectual, and artistic transcendence were given visual form. She argues that the imagery of sleep, a passive experience equated with the loss of reason, offered a powerful visual sign for a Platonic model of divine inspiration. Drawing on primary sources, including handbooks of dream interpretation, the recorded dreams of artists and poets, and philosophical texts, Ruvoldt also considers a wide range of objects, from portrait medals to gift drawings where sleep is visualized. Her study recovers the Renaissance perception, production and reception of sleep and dreams and their relation to divine inspiration.

    • First English study of dreams in Renaissance art
    • Interdisciplinary approach to the iconography of inspiration
    • Uses wide array of primary source material
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    Reviews & endorsements

    '… a subtle and absorbing book. In part, it draws on an older tradition of iconographic studies in art history, but its sophisticated critical readings are clearly informed by more recent theoretical work in semiotics and gender studies.' The Art Book

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    Product details

    • Date Published: April 2004
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9780521821605
    • length: 256 pages
    • dimensions: 254 x 198 x 20 mm
    • weight: 0.797kg
    • contains: 74 b/w illus.
    • availability: Unavailable - out of print November 2012
  • Table of Contents

    1. The sleep of reason
    2. Sleep and waking/rapture and reason
    3. Pregnant poets
    4. Sleeping beauties
    5. The Dream of Raphael
    6. The dream of Michelangelo.

  • Author

    Maria Ruvoldt, Columbia University, New York

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