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FROM THINGS FOR VILLAS TO PRINCELY GIFTS: MAIOLICA FOR RENAISSANCE DUKES AND DUCHESSES OF URBINO

FROM THINGS FOR VILLAS TO PRINCELY GIFTS: MAIOLICA FOR RENAISSANCE DUKES AND DUCHESSES OF URBINO

Thursday March 6, 2014, 6:30 - 8 pm

Speaker: Professor Timothy Wilson
30th Anniversary Lecture Series
Italian Maiolica Lecture

Online sales end at 4 pm on March 6.
Tickets will be available at the door.

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Italian Renaissance maiolica, especially the type (unprecedented in world ceramics) painted with narrative scenes (istoriato), gives us a finger on the pulse of Italian Renaissance life more intimate than any other art form.

In the century from about 1480, Italian maiolica potters created a product of unprecedented artistic and technical sophistication, which caught the interest of some of the most exalted and discriminating men and women of the age. The lecture will explore the ways the Dukes of Urbino and members of their household promoted and exploited the art for which Urbino became famous, for personal, and for public and diplomatic purposes. In particular, it will examine evidence that female members of the Ducal family were prime movers in commissioning maiolica and that gift-giving between women was often a major factor in prestigious commissions.

THE SPEAKER
Professor Timothy Wilson, Research Keeper, Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford

Timothy Wilson is Professor of the Arts of the Renaissance at Oxford University, and Research Keeper in the Department of Western Art at the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford (a department of Oxford University). From 1990 to 2013 he was Keeper of that Department. He was previously (1979-90) Assistant Keeper with responsibility for the Renaissance collections in the Department of Medieval and Later Antiquities of the British Museum.

He is a specialist in Italian Renaissance maiolica. His publications on the subject include Ceramic Art of the Italian Renaissance (British Museum, London, 1987), Italian Renaissance Pottery (British Museum, London, 1991; editor).Maiolica: Italian Renaissance Ceramics in the Ashmolean Museum (2nd ed, Oxford 2003); Le maioliche rinascimentali nelle collezioni della Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio di Perugia (editor and principal author) (Perugia 2006-7), the entries on ceramics in Western Decorative Arts, Part 1 (Systematic Catalogue of the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC; Washington and Cambridge 1993); on Urbino maiolica in the catalogue of the ceramics in the Museo d’Arti Applicate at the Castello Sforzesco, Milan (2000); and on the Spanish and Italian maiolica and slipware in the Detroit Institute of Arts (with Alan Darr, 2013), as well as many articles in English and Italian periodicals and entries in exhibition catalogues. His comprehensive catalogue, written with Dora Thornton, Italian Renaissance ceramics: a catalogue of the British Museum collection, was published in 2009. He has also published on sculpture, metalwork, heraldry and flags, modern graphic art, and the history of collecting and of museums.

He is a Professorial Fellow of Balliol College, Oxford, a fellow of the Accademia Raffaello, Urbino, and of the Accademia di Belle Arti Pietro Vannucci, Perugia, a former fellow of Villa I Tatti (Harvard University), Florence, and of the Frick Center for the History of Collecting, New York. He is an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Society of Painter-Printmakers.

He is currently working on a book on maiolica in The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.


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