A General Bibliography for Renaissance Art and
For your general delectation and future reference, here is a brief list
of some of the basic sources for Renaissance art and architecture,
divided into Italian and Northern sections. Even the general literature is
vast in number and subject, so use the titles below as the beginnings of more
Italian Renaissance Art and Architecture
- John Paoletti and Gary M. Radke. Art in Renaissance Italy.
New York, 1997.
A thematic approach to the art of the Italian Renaissance.
- Bruce Cole. Italian Art: 1250-1550: the Relation of Renaissance
Art to Life and Society. New York, 1987.
- Peter and Linda Murray. The Art of the Renaissance. New York,
On the Renaissance in Northern and Southern Europe.
- Michael Levey. High Renaissance. London, 1975.
- John Shearman. Mannerism. London, 1967.
- Michael Levey. Early Renaissance.. London, 1967.
These three are part of a series of short paperbacks describing the art
of the period in Southern and Northern Europe.
- John White. The Birth and Rebirth of Pictorial Space. London.
Space and perspective systems before Alberti.
- Eve Borsook. The Mural Painters of Tuscany: from Cimabue to Andrea
del Sarto. Oxford, 1979.
- Millard Meiss. The Great Age of Fresco: Discoveries, Recoveries
and Revivals. New York, 1970.
These are the two essential books on the art of the fresco; the first
is a descriptive catalogue of frescoes in Tuscany, and the second is the
catalogue of the landmark exhibition devoted to the frescoes restored
after the damage caused by the 1966 flood.
- Walter Friedlaender. Mannerism and Anti-Mannerism in Italian
Painting. New York, 1957.
Heinrich Wolfflin. Classic Art: an Introduction to the Italian
Renaissance. London, 1952.
- Roberta J. M. Olson. Italian Renaissance Sculpture. A handy
and well-done one volume survey. London and New York, 1992.
- John Pope-Hennessy. An Introduction to Italian Renaissance
Sculpture. In three volumes:
- Italian Gothic Sculpture.
- Italian Renaissance Sculpture.
- Italian High Renaissance and Baroque Sculpture.
Use the third edition of 1985, for it has a section on "recent"
scholarly work. While this is somewhat behind the times, it has the
advantage of including the considerations on subsequent studies by the
man considered to have been perhaps the most influential of Italian
Renaissance scholars of the second half of this century.
- Charles Seymour. Sculpture in Italy : 1400-1500.
Harmondsworth and Baltimore, 1966.
While much of this is outdated, it still includes useful material,
including some artists Pope-Hennessy doesn't discuss and relevant
- Charles Avery. Florentine Renaissance Sculpture. London,
A good handbook for Florence; moving from the Pisani to Mannerism and
the Late Renaissance.
- Ludwig H. Heydenreich. Architecture in Italy: 1400-1500.
Revised by Paul Davies. New Haven, 1996.
- Wolfgang Lotz. Architecture in Italy: 1500-1600. Revised by
Deborah Howard. New Haven, 1995.
Not as useful as they could have been--for bizarre legal reasons the
texts could only be updated with a short preliminary chapter, rather than
truly revised. However, the new large format with the excellent
illustrations is some compensation.
- Ralph Lieberman. Renaissance Architecture in Venice. London,
1982. Beautifully done by an art historian who is also a professional
- Peter Murray. Renaissance Architecture. New York, 1971.
- Wolfgang Lotz. Studies in Italian Renaissance Architecture.
A collection of some of Lotz's shorter articles. Includes basic studies
such as "Notes on the Centralized Church of the Renaissance."
- Rudolf Wittkower. Architectural Principles in the Age of
Humanism. London, 1962.
Northern Renaissance Art and Architecture
- Charles D. Cuttler. Northern Painting from Pucelle to Bruegel:
Fourteenth, Fifteenth, and Sixteenth Centures. New York, 1968.
- Max J. Friedlander. Early Netherlandish Painting. 14 vols. in
16 books. New York, 1967-76.
- Craig Harbison. The Mirror of the Artist: Northern Renaissance Art
in its Historical Context. Prentice Hall Press, 1995.
- James Snyder. Northern Renaissance Art. Harry Abrams, 1985.
(Above Left) Detail, Luca della Robbia, the Cantoria, 1431-1438.
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