Baroque and Rococo by Vernon Hyde Minor Book Resume:
The period 1600-1760 in Europe was remarkable for its artistic diversity, encompassing the dramatic exuberance of Bernini, the psychological acuity of Rembrandt, and the sparkling brio of Boucher. Yet the shared principles, concerns, and attitudes of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries created a kind of internationalism that justifies a survey of the era as a whole. Traditional surveys of the period divide their material strictly by countries and chronological periods. By contrast, Vernon Minor looks at the prevalent themes of Baroque and Rococo artistic production through the lens of the dominant institutions of the day. The ideologies of the Counter-Reformation Church, the court of Louis Quatorze, and the mercantile economy of the Calvinist Dutch are implicit in much of the painting, sculpture, and architecture of the epoch. In a series of connecting essays, readers will encounter perceptive discussions of ecclesiastical altarpieces, ceiling paintings, and papal tombs; church and palace architecture; mythological and history paintings; landscapes and city views; portraits, still lifes, and genre scenes; Baroque town planning and Rococo domestic settings -- all seen in the context of contemporary artists, academies, patrons, critics, and beholders. While eschewing outmoded approaches to the subject, the author supplies readings of many of the acknowledged masterpieces of the day emanating from England, France, the Low Countries, Italy, and Spain.