Bernini: Sculpting in Clay

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Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2012 - Terra-cotta sculpture, Italian - 416 pages
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"The brilliantly expressive clay models created by Gian Lorenzo Bernini (1598-1680) as "sketches" for his works in marble offer extraordinary insights into his creative imagination. Although long admired, the terracotta models have never been the subject of such detailed examination. This publication presents a wealth of new discoveries (including evidence of the artist's fingerprints imprinted on the clay), resolving lingering issues of attribution while giving readers a vivid sense of how the artist and his assistants fulfilled a steady stream of monumental commissions. Essays describe Bernini's education as a modeler; his approach to preparatory drawings; his use of assistants; and the response to his models by 17th-century collectors. Extensive research by conservators and art historians explores the different types of models created in Bernini's workshop. Richly illustrated, Bernini transforms our understanding of the sculptor and his distinctive and fascinating working methods."--Publisher's website.
 

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About the author (2012)

A sculptor and architect, Gian Lorenzo Bernini was the formative master of the Roman baroque. Son of a sculptor, Bernini showed originality and power at an early age. He ceased to treat marble as a block and concentrated on the multiplicity of viewpoints from which a figure could be experienced. The drama and richness of his sculpture in marble, stucco, and stone is extraordinary. Subsequent neoclassicist critics disapproved of him, but his fame has returned. Bernini was one of baroque Rome's greatest architects. He created the mighty square and colonnades in front of St. Peter's and the baldacchino in the basilica. In addition, he was a painter and writer of note. Of a tempestuous temperament, he was deeply religious. The mystical sensuous Ecstasy of St. Theresa is among his most famous sculptures. Bernini died in 1680.

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