Discourse on Sacred and Profane Images
In the wake of the Counter-Reformation, Cardinal Gabriele Paleotti, the archbishop of Bologna, wrote a remarkable treatise on art during a time when the Church feared rampant abuse in the arts. Translated into English here for the first time, Paleotti's Discourse on Sacred and Profane Images argues that art should address a broad audience and explains the painter's responsibility to his spectators. The Discourse is introduced by historian Paolo Prodi, who explains how—even if the archbishop did not succeed in reforming the arts—Paleotti's treatise constituted one last synthesis of art as a reading of creation and salvation history, and “sacred” art as a vehicle of devotion.
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