Bellini and the East
Situated between Western Europe and the civilizations of Byzantium and the Islamic world, Renaissance Venice was uniquely positioned at the crossroads of East and West. In the beautiful Adriatic city, ideas and aesthetics were exchanged and developed in a remarkable age of cultural fusion. Venice’s distinctive architecture is already well known for integrating divergent cultural influences, but the impact of this synthesis on Venetian painting has not been fully explored. This gorgeous book focuses on the work of the remarkable Bellini family of painters—Jacopo and his sons Gentile and Giovanni—who transformed Venetian painting in the fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries.
The authors examine the influence of Venetian trade with the East on Bellini paintings; the Byzantine influence on Venetian art; the impact of a visit to Mehmed II’s court in 1479 on Gentile Bellini, as well as his effect on Eastern-trained artists there; and much more. The book is abundantly illustrated with the Bellini family’s paintings and examples of the Eastern objects that inspired them.
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