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Unit information: Early Italian Art in 2014/15

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Unit name Early Italian Art
Unit code HART20009
Credit points 20
Level of study I/5
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 2 (weeks 13 - 24)
Unit director Professor. Williamson
Open unit status Not open



Special Field Project

School/department Department of History of Art (Historical Studies)
Faculty Faculty of Arts

Description including Unit Aims

The unit explores the art of Italy during the medieval and early renaissance periods. The focus in a given year may be on Florentine or Sienese material, or a combination of the two. Italian painting from the thirteenth to early fifteenth centuries has been characterised both as the climactic achievement of the middle ages and as the dawn of the renaissance. Themes to be explored may include: the relationship between different artistic centres (including Florence, Siena, and other centres such as Assisi, Naples, Rome and Venice); relationships between painting and other media; the effects of patronage and politics; historical, social, religious and political contexts for art in the period; function and viewership; the effects of periodisation in the study of art of this period. Key artists to be studied may include: Duccio, Simone Martini, Giotto, Ambrogio Lorenzetti, Pietro Lorenzetti, Taddeo Gaddi, Agnolo Gaddi through to Masaccio, Masolino, Sassetta, Giovanni di Paolo, Pisanello, Filippo Lippi and Piero della Francesca.

Intended Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit students will have developed 1. a deeper and wider awareness of medieval and early Renaissance Italian Art; 2. the ability to analyse and generalise about issues of continuity and change; 3. the ability to select pertinent evidence/data in order to illustrate/demonstrate more general issues through coherent argument; 4. the ability to derive benefit from and contribute effectively to group discussion; 5. the ability to identify a particular academic interpretation, evaluate it critically and form an individual viewpoint; 6. the acquisition of key writing, research, and presentation skills

Teaching Information

Weekly 2-hour seminar Access to tutorial advice with unit tutor in consultation hours.

Assessment Information

2-hour unseen written examination (summative, 100%)

Reading and References

Diana Norman, Siena and the Virgin. Art and politics in a late medieval city-state (New Haven, 1999) Joanna Cannon and Beth Williamson (eds.), Art, Politics and Civic Religion in Central Italy, 1261–c. 1352 (Aldershot, 2000) Hayden Maginnis, The World of the Early Sienese Painter (University Park, PA, 2001) Judith B. Steinhoff, Sienese Painting after the Black Death (Cambridge, 2006) Jill Dunkerton (et al.), Giotto to Durer: Early Renaissance Painting in the National Gallery (London, 1991) Dillian Gordon, The Italian Paintings Before 1400 (London, National Gallery, 2011)