Here I Stand: Perspectives From Another Point of View

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Interpretations in Art is a series dedicated to the history, theory and criticism of art. Its aim is to make available interpretive essays that offer new insight into the complexities of art and the critical methods for understanding them. Intended as a forum for the presentation of a wide range of issues and approaches, Interpretations in Art will promote studies on fundamental problems of expression and communications in the visual arts; it seeks to encourage consideration of the structures of meaning as well as the contexts and conditions of creation and reception.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In a scholarly study of interest primarily to art historians, Smith argues that the development of perspective in the Renaissance and its subsequent use must be understood in a social context. Filippo Brunelleschi's picture of a Florentine piazza uses perspective to evoke a ``level playing field'' for public-spirited citizens; and for the next five centuries, as Smith demonstrates, perspective was bound up with the idea of ``public man'': the Christian citizen as a responsible participant in the life of the community. However, as people's sense of the legitimizing function of civil, domestic and religious institutions declined, so did perspective, contends Smith, professor emeritus at Washington University. With Picasso, any effort at defining an emotional bond that might link the painted figures and the observer in a perspectival context was abandoned, as modern art largely jettisoned themes of character and community. Smith develops his sweeping thesis through a close, analytical scrutiny of 90 reproductions of works from Masaccio to Le Corbusier. (Oct.)
Smith (art history, Washington U.) offers a new approach to the study of perspective, arguing that the perspective system developed in the early Renaissance was a way for the artist to declare a stand in relation to church and state and to express ideas about the relation of the individual to society. Smith develops his argument through an analysis of artists of many eras, from Brunelleschi's early Renaissance images of the Florentine Baptistry to modern artists such as Claude Monet. Includes a few color and many b&w reproductions. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780231084260
  • Publisher: Columbia University Press
  • Publication date: 11/3/1994
  • Series: Interpretations in Art Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 191
  • Product dimensions: 7.32 (w) x 10.35 (h) x 0.78 (d)

Table of Contents

1 The Lost Tavolette 1
2 On the Relation of Perspective to Character 20
3 The Two Allegiances 35
4 Perspectives on the Last Supper 75
5 An Eccentric Stance 110
6 Family and Church 127
7 The End of the Matter 154
Epilogue 183
Notes 187
Index 193
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