THE PANORAMA OF THE RENAISSANCE by Margaret--Ed. Aston

THE PANORAMA OF THE RENAISSANCE

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KIRKUS REVIEW

As crowded, lively, and full of detail as a period tapestry, this volume offers an unusual survey of that exuberant period, making ingenious use of the paintings, sculpture, and architecture of the era to recapture a real sense of life in Europe from the 14th to the 16th centuries. Aston, a scholar and fellow of the British Academy, provides brief, lucid introductory remarks to a series of lengthy chapters (on humanism, religion, life and death, and art, among others) that consist of numbers of two-page spreads containing a precise paragraph on the subject at hand (the human form, eroticism, the domestic setting, the artist's mastery of space, the Sistine ceiling) and six to ten illustrations. The reproductions (1,000, with 578 in color) are crisp, and taken together, the mix of drawings, photographs of artifacts, and the period's astonishing art conveys a unique feeling for both the era's flux and its unity, the manner in which every element of society participated in remaking the world. A fresh, delightful introduction to the subject.

Pub Date: Dec. 1st, 1996
Page count: 368pp
Publisher: Abrams