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Description - Lives of Giovanni Bellini by Giorgio Vasari

Scion of an artistic dynasty, Giovanni Bellini is arguably the greatest Venetian painter of the early Renaissance. His astonishing naturalism revolutionised altarpiece painting and is still a source of wonder, as any visit to Frari in Venice will confirm. Most of what we know about this great artist comes from the earliest biographies by Vasari and Ridolfi printed here – the Ridolfi never before translated into English. A different and very personal insight is given by extensive correspondence with Bellini's great but neglected patron Isabella d'Este. Giorgio Vasari (1511-1574) was a painter, architect and intimate of the Medici. His lasting monument is the Lives of the Most Excellent Painters, Sculptors and Architects, published in 1550 and enlarged in 1568. Carlo Ridolfi (1594-1658) worked as a painter in Venice but is best known for his Maraviglie dell'arte, which attempted to do for Venetian art what Vasari had achieved for Tuscan art. Isabella d'Este (1474-1539) was Marchesa of Mantua and one of the leading women of the Italian Renaissance, a major cultural and political figure. Davide Gasparotto is curator at the Getty Museum. He is a leading figure in the field of Renaissance through eighteenthcentury Italian painting and sculpture. He is the author of Giovanni Bellini: Landscapes of Faith in Renaissance Venice. 47 colour illustrations

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