The Traveling Artist in the Italian Renaissance


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Geography, Mobility, and Style

David Young Kim


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This important and innovative book examines artists’ mobility as a critical aspect of Italian Renaissance art. It is well known that many eminent artists such as Cimabue, Giotto, Donatello, Lotto, Michelangelo, Raphael, and Titian traveled. This book is the first to consider the sixteenth-century literary descriptions of their journeys in relation to the larger Renaissance discourse concerning mobility, geography, the act of creation, and selfhood.
David Young Kim carefully explores relevant themes in Giorgio Vasari’s monumental Lives of the Artists, in particular how style was understood to register an artist’s encounter with place. Through new readings of critical ideas, long-standing regional prejudices, and entire biographies, The Traveling Artist in the Italian Renaissance provides a groundbreaking case for the significance of mobility in the interpretation of art and the wider discipline of art history.
David Young Kim is assistant professor of art history at the University of Pennsylvania and visiting lecturer at the University of Zurich. 
“A significant and distinctive intervention in Renaissance art history, indeed in art history in general.”—Stuart Lingo, University of Washington
"The Travelling Artist forever changed the way I think about Renaissance art and literature, Vasari and Lotto, Venetian painting, and so much more. . . . A luminous piece of writing.”—Philip Sohm, University of Toronto

“Kim is… a sensitive viewer, and impressively widely read.”—Charles Dempsey, Burlington

“No summary of Kim’s book can do justice to the richness of his treatment of the topic and his utilization of a whole range of period sources relating to other subjects including travel literature and natural history.”—Christian K. Kleinbub, CAA Reviews

The Traveling Artist in the Italian Renaissance is a worthy addition to the study of Vasari, and adds a valuable dimension to the complex field of early modern mobility.”—Katrin Seyler, Renaissance Quarterly
ISBN: 9780300198676
Publication Date: December 23, 2014
304 pages, 8 1/2 x 11
63 color + 104 b/w illus.