Art and Love in Renaissance Italy


You are viewing an older version of the Yalebooks website. Please visit out new website with more updated information and a better user experience:

Edited by Andrea Bayer; Andrea Bayer, Beverly Louise Brown, Nancy Edwards, Everett Fahy, Deborah L. Krohn, Jacqueline Marie Musacchio, Luke Syson, Dora Thornton, James Grantham Turner, and Linda Wolk-Simon

View Inside Format: Cloth
Price: $65.00
Our shopping cart only supports Mozilla Firefox. Please ensure you're using that browser before attempting to purchase.

With contributions by Sarah Cartwright, Jessie McNab, J. Kenneth Moore, Eve Straussman-Pflanzer, Wendy Thompson, and Jeremy Warren


Many famous Italian Renaissance artworks were made to celebrate love and marriage. They were the pinnacles of a tradition---dating from the early Renaissance---of commemorating betrothal, marriage, and the birth of a child by commissioning extraordinary objects or exchanging them as gifts. This important volume is the first to examine the entire range of works to which Renaissance rituals of love and marriage gave rise and makes a major contribution to our understanding of Renaissance art in its broader cultural context. Some 140 works of art, dating from about 1400 to 1600, are discussed by a distinguished group of scholars and are reproduced in full color.


Marriage and childbirth gifts are the point of departure. These range from maiolica, glassware, and jewelry to birth trays, musical instruments, and nuptial portraits. Bonds of love of another sort were represented in erotic drawings and prints. From these precedents, an increasingly inventive approach to subjects of love and marriage culminated in paintings by some of the greatest artists of the Renaissance, including Giulio Romano, Lorenzo Lotto, and Titian.


Published in association with The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Exhibition Schedule:

The Metropolitan Museum of Art (November 11, 2008 – February 16, 2009)

 Kimbell Art Museum, Fort Worth (March 15 – June 14, 2009)

Andrea Bayer is Curator in the Department of European Paintings at The Metropolitan Museum of Art.


The Metropolitan Museum of Art (November 11, 2008 – February 16, 2009)

 Kimbell Art Museum, Fort Worth (March 15 – June 14, 2009)

"A delightfully bawdy romp as well as a thorough exploration of the iconography, this exhibition catalog proffers passion, romance, and solid study as it considers matrimony in Renaissance Italy. . . . Highly recommended for libraries specializing in art and art history."—Library Journal

“With nearly 600 illustrations between them, they offer extraordinary evidence of almost every aspect of daily life among the wealthy Florentines (and others) in the 15th century … They are very good; in their distillation of facts they are the new fundamental source books, the compendia to which every student of history and art history should first turn for information on the social rituals and associated furniture and artefacts of the wealthy Italian Renaissance household.” - Brian Sewell, The Evening Standard

"This is the catalogue of an exhibition, held at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Kimbell Museum, highlighting Renaissance art of an intimate, personal character. . . . A series of excellent essays take current scholarship further and provide a broad base for understanding the objects in their daily context. This catalogue is an important tool for the study of Renaissance material culture. Recommended. Lower-level undergraduates through faculty/researchers."—Choice

"Truly outstanding essays in the catalogue on the topic of profane love. . . .The catalogue's concluding chapter is striking for what it reveals about the impact of Hope's work down to the present day, and it provides clues to understanding details of both the exhibition and catalogue."—Dennis Romano, College Art Association

"A major contribution to our understanding of Renaissance art in its broader culturual context. . . . Highly informative, bringing together a wide range of objects and images as a way to better understand the ritual of love and family life in all stages and those involved in them. . . . A must-have for anyone interested in Renaissance art and private life."—Katherine A. McIver, Renaissance Quarterly

Selected as a finalist for the 2010 Alfred H. Barr Jr., Award given by the College Art Association
ISBN: 9780300124118
Publication Date: November 25, 2008
Publishing Partner: Published in association with The Metropolitan Museum of Art
392 pages, 9 x 12
75 b/w + 300 color illus.
Dutch New York, between East and West

The World of Margrieta van Varick

Edited by Deborah Krohn and Peter N.

View details
Leonardo da Vinci

Painter at the Court of Milan

Luke Syson; With Larry Keith, Arturo Galansino, Antonio Maz

View details
A Golden Age of European Art

Celebrating Fifty Years of the Sarah Campbell Blaffer Foundation

Edited by James Clifton and Melina Kervandjian; With essays

View details

Italian Renaissance Ceramics in The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Timothy Wilson; With an essay by Luke Syson

View details
Making The Met, 1870-2020

Edited by Andrea Bayer with Laura D. Corey

View details

Love, Desire, Death

Matthias Wivel; With contributions by Beverly Louise Brown,

View details