This podcast will explore the development of the art, architecture, culture and history in Italy, from ancient Roman times through the Renaissance. Listeners will develop an understanding of Italy’s role in the development of Western civilization and an ability to appreciate and understand works of art in their historical context.
Florence: Uffizi Gallery - Leonardo da Vinci's Adoration of the Magi
In 1481, Leonardo began work on a major altarpiece for the church of San Donato a Scopeto. At the same time, he sent his resume to the ruler of Milan, Ludovico Sforza, in hopes of landing the position of court artist for that duchy. This episode examines Leonardo’s painting of the Adoration of the Magi - most likely left unfinished because of the artist's departure for Milan - and why much of what we see today may not be by the hand of Leonardo.
Leonardo da Vinci's "Portrait of Ginevra de' Benci" (National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC)
This episode will examine Leonardo's groundbreaking portrait of a young Florentine woman named Ginevra de’ Benci, which is the only painting by the great Renaissance genius in the Americas. Exquisitely conserved, despite it being cut down, it is one of the earliest examples of a 3/4 frontal pose in Italian portraiture.
Florence: Uffizi Gallery - Leonardo da Vinci's Annunciation
This episode will analyze Leonardo’s earliest known painting for the church of San Bartolomeo a Monte Oliveto, which he painted at only 20 years of age. Leonardo’s early works were clear indicators of this unique artistic vision and superlative talent. The Annunciation is not only stunningly beautiful, but also introduces two of Leonardo's signature innovations - sfumato and atmospheric perspective, clearly demonstrating his interest in the science of optics.
Botticelli's Muse - Simonetta Cattaneo Vespucci
This episode will attempt to unravel the mystery behind one of the world’s most famous paintings – the Birth of Venus by Botticelli. Was the artist's muse the legendary Simonetta Cattaneo Vespucci, who is still reputed to be the most beautiful woman of Renaissance Florence? Just who was this legendary woman, and what was her relationship to the great Renaissance painter? Find out in this episode that is dedicated to the Marilyn Monroe of the Renaissance.
History - The Pazzi Conspiracy
On April 26, 1478, Giuliano de’ Medici lay dead on the pavement of Florence cathedral with 19 stab wounds serving as testimony to the vicious attack that he had just suffered. Had his assassins succeeded in eliminating his older brother, Lorenzo “il Magnifico” de’ Medici, that day as well, the history of the western Europe, and the world for that matter, would have been drastically altered. This episode will examine the protagonists, motivation, and plot behind one of history’s greatest conspiraci
Rome: The Sistine Chapel before Michelangelo
Decades before Michelangelo climbed up on the nearly 70 feet of scaffolding to adorn the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, a veritable “All-Star Team” of late-15th- century artists had already decorated its walls. This episode will examine the pre-history of the Sistine Chapel and the early Renaissance frescoes that had already transformed the chapel into an extraordinary decorative complex.
Obviously very informative but I really do appreciate the way you annunciate the names and places, Italian or English words. PLEASE DO A PODCAST ON VICENZA! In my opinion one of the most under appreciated Italian cities often overlooked by American tourists.
Engaging and Informing
Bravo my friend I’m a huge fan of your podcast, im grateful you continue to bring your expertise and understanding to us. You gave a great voice and a captivating way of speaking!
I’m a recent graduate with a bachelors in studio art, and a passionate student of art history and philosophy. You’re podcast is inspiring, I am hoping to be a part of a new renaissance if you will, a resurgence of the arts and culture in the modern age all with the aim of praising our Creator and promoting the well being of our fellow man. God bless, thanks again!
Great presentation, easy to digest for beginners
Thank you, Rocky, for the work you’ve put in to produce a high quality art history podcast for absolute beginners like me. I especially appreciate the clarity of thought and enunciation in your words in English and Italian. No painful “uhms and uhhs” ever detected. Looking forward to learning more. Thank you!!