Cover image for On Antique Painting By Francisco de Hollanda, Translated by Alice Sedgwick Wohl, with introductory essays byJoaquim Oliveira Caetano, and Charles Hope

On Antique Painting

Francisco de Hollanda, Translated by Alice Sedgwick Wohl, with introductory essays by Joaquim Oliveira Caetano and Charles Hope and notes by Hellmut Wohl

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$93.95 | Hardcover Edition
ISBN: 978-0-271-05965-5

$39.95 | Paperback Edition
ISBN: 978-0-271-05966-2

312 pages
6" × 9"
10 b&w illustrations
2013

On Antique Painting

Francisco de Hollanda, Translated by Alice Sedgwick Wohl, with introductory essays by Joaquim Oliveira Caetano and Charles Hope and notes by Hellmut Wohl

“As the only English translation of this significant Renaissance treatise, On Antique Painting marks a contribution not only to the field of Portuguese literature but also to the study of humanism during the Renaissance.”

 

  • Description
  • Reviews
  • Bio
  • Table of Contents
  • Sample Chapters
  • Subjects
Francisco de Hollanda completed Da pintura antigua in 1548, eight years after the young Portuguese humanist, painter, and architect had spent two years in Italy. Book I is the first Portuguese treatise on the theory and practice of painting. In contrast to Italian texts on artistic theory, which define painting as the imitation of nature, Hollanda’s treatise, influenced by Neoplatonism, develops a theory of the painter as an original creator guided by divine inspiration. Book II, “Dialogues in Rome,” is a record of three conversations with Michelangelo, Vittoria Colonna, and members of their circle and a fourth with Giulio Clovio. It is the most informative and intimate intellectual portrait of Michelangelo before the biographies by Vasari and Condivi.

“As the only English translation of this significant Renaissance treatise, On Antique Painting marks a contribution not only to the field of Portuguese literature but also to the study of humanism during the Renaissance.”
“Alice Sedgwick Wohl’s translation of Francisco de Hollanda’s De pintura antigua reintroduces an important voice to the larger discourse on Renaissance art theory and criticism. The Portuguese visitor was an alert witness to the aesthetic discussions taking place in sixteenth-century Rome; these he recorded in a series of dialogues in which Michelangelo was a dominant participant—and the reason the dialogues themselves have received much attention in modern scholarship. The dialogues, however, constituted Book II of Hollanda’s larger project, which was intended as a defense of the nobility of the art of painting and a program for realizing that goal. In the forty-four chapters of Book I, the author addresses all the major themes in the discussion of the art, but Hollanda’s most ambitious recapitulation of Renaissance aesthetics has been relatively neglected in art-historical scholarship. This new translation and critical edition will inspire reevaluation of Hollanda and the significance of his project.”
On Antique Painting belongs to a tradition of English translations of important primary sources in Renaissance art history and theory, including Leon Battista Alberti's On Painting and Giorgio Vasari's Lives of the Artists.”
“Alice Wohl’s long-awaited translation of Francisco de Hollanda’s On Antique Painting in its entirety (which includes not only the four dialogues, but the treatise!) is an excellent contribution to the distinguished Penn State series of translations of primary sources in Renaissance and Baroque art. A valuable contribution to the study of Renaissance art history, literature, theory, and many other topics of interest, including the culture of Renaissance Portugal and the classical revival of the Renaissance, this translation should renew interest in Michelangelo’s fascinating and controversial role in Hollanda’s dialogues. Introductory essays and endnotes provide the reader with a rich context for the understanding of this important work.”
“[Alice Sedgwick Wohl] is alive both to literal sense and to the difficulties posed by usage and stylistic conventions as employed in a language written four and a half centuries ago. With Hollanda she has taken on an especially difficult task, and has succeeded with colours flying. We now have for the first time in English the whole of Hollanda’s treatise. . . . We are all indebted to Sedgwick Wohl and her collaborators for an invaluable contribution to Renaissance studies.”
“The manuscript of Francisco de Hollanda’s Da pintura antigua (completed in 1548) is lost, or still to be identified. It was, however, translated into Castilian in 1563, and a copy in Portuguese was made in 1792, both probably using the same manuscript in Madrid, itself either the original or an early copy sent from Portugal to Spain. Alice Sedgwick Wohl has collated the texts of both versions in making her excellent translation from the Portuguese, occasionally following the Castilian text where ambiguities or lacunae appear in the Portuguese copy, but always noting the variant reading when she does so. She is an experienced, sensitive and reliable translator. . . . She is alive both to literal sense and to the difficulties posed by usage and stylistic conventions as employed in a language written four and a half centuries ago. With Hollanda she has taken on an especially difficult task, and has succeeded with colours flying. We now have for the first time in English the whole of Hollanda’s treatise. . . . We are all indebted to Sedgwick Wohl and her collaborators for an invaluable contribution to Renaissance studies.”
“Scholars of early modern culture and the history of art owe [Wohl] thanks. That her translation is clear and elegant, painstakingly attentive to the two early manuscripts available today, and sensitive to Hollanda’s ideas and milieu substantially increases our debt to her.”

Alice Sedgwick Wohl is an independent scholar and translator.

Joaquim Oliveira Caetano is Curator of the Museu Nacional de Arte Antiga in Lisbon.

Charles Hope is the retired former director of the Warburg Institute in London.

Hellmut Wohl is Professor Emeritus of Art History at Boston University.

Introduction

Note on the Early Years of the Portuguese Empire

Alice Sedgwick Wohl

Francisco de Hollanda (1517–1584): The Fascination of Rome and the Times in Portugal

Joaquim Oliveira Caetano

Francisco de Hollanda and Art Theory, Humanism, and Neoplatonism in Italy

Charles Hope

On Antique Painting

Book I

Prologue

Chapter I: How God Was a Painter

Chapter II: What Painting Is

Chapter III: On the First Painters

Chapter IV: Which Was the Fatherland of Painting

Chapter V: When Painting Was Lost, and When It Was Rediscovered

Chapter VI: How the Holy Mother Church Preserves Painting

Chapter VII: What the Painter Must Be

Chapter VIII: What Sciences Are of Use to the Painter

Chapter IX: By What Means the Painter Must Learn

Chapter X: The Second Thing from Which He Must Learn

Chapter XI: The Difference of Antiquity

Chapter XII: Why Antique Painting Is Celebrated and What It Is

Chapter XIII: How the Precept of Antique Painting Spread Through the Whole World

Chapter XIV: Concerning Some Precepts of Antiquity, and First, Concerning the Invention

Chapter XV: Concerning the Idea, What It Is in Painting

Chapter XVI: In What the Power of Painting Consists

Chapter XVII: Of the Proportion of the Body

Chapter XVIII: On Anatomy

Chapter XIX: On Physiognomy

Chapter XX: Precept for Antique Figures Standing Still

Chapter XXI: On Antique Figures That Move or Walk or Run or Fight

Chapter XXII: On Antique Figures That Are Seated and [Those That Are] Recumbent

Chapter XXIII: On Antique Equestrian Statues

Chapter XXIV: On the Ornament and Costume of the Ancients in Their Images

Chapter XXV: On Painting Animals

Chapter XXVI: On the Composition of Antique Historias

Chapter XXVII: On Painting Sacred Images, and First, Images of Our Savior

Chapter XXVIII: On Painting Images of the Invisible

Chapter XXIX: On the Divine Image

Chapter XXX: On Other Images of the Invisible, Such as the Virtues

Chapter XXXI: On Invisible Forms Such as the Vices

Chapter XXXII: On Painting Purgatory and Hell

Chapter XXXIII: On Painting Eternity and Glory, and the World

Chapter XXXIV: On Light or Brightness in Painting

Chapter XXXV: On Shade and Darkness in Painting

Chapter XXXVI: On Black and White

Chapter XXXVII: On the Colors

Chapter XXXVIII: On Decorum or Decency

Chapter XXXIX: On Perspective

Chapter XL: On the Point at Which the Painting Converges

Chapter XLI: On Foreshortening

Chapter XLII: On Statuary Painting or Sculpture

Chapter XLIII, Part 1: On Painting as Architect

Chapter XLIII, Part 2: On Painting as Architect

Chapter XLIV, Part 1: On All the Types and Modes of Painting

Chapter XLIV, Part 2: On All the Types and Modes of Painting

Table of Some Rules for Painting

Book II

Prologue

First Dialogue

Second Dialogue

Third Dialogue

Fourth Dialogue

Table of the Famous Modern Painters Whom They Call Eagles

Proverbs About Painting

Remembrance

Appendix A: Chronology of Popes and Rulers

Appendix B: Works by Francisco de Hollanda

Glossary

Bibliography

Subject Index

Index of Names and Places

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