Editions Liana Levi
Collected here in one volume are Daniel Arasse’s two enlightening essays on Raphaël, one of the painters who best exemplified the Humanistic ideals of the High Renaissance. Arasse reconstructs the thread of artistic and philosophical influence wrought by this master of grace and harmony, revealing the vision behind the paintings and their execution. The first explores themes of ecstasy and beatific vision represented in several of the artist’s works, among them St. Catherine (1508), St. Cecilia with Saints (1514 - 1516), Ezekiel's Vision (1518), and The Transfiguration (1519 – 1520). The second focuses exclusively upon the Sistine Madonna (1513 – 1514), with a fascinating interpretation of the two famous cherubs leaning over a threshold in the painting’s foreground. Less interested here in iconography, he reveals to general readers, scholars and painters alike the formal challenges faced by the artist, while helping us better navigate the visual framework of the images and their spatial relationships.
Daniel Arasse : A graduate of the École Normale Supérieure and former member of l’École française in Rome, Daniel Arasse taught art history for many years at the Sorbonne in Paris. Director of the French Institute in Florence from 1982 – 1989, he subsequently became Director of Studies at the École des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales until his recent death. He was also director of a major exhibition of works by Botticelli shown in 2003 at the Musée de Luxembourg in Paris which then moved to the Palazzo Strozzi, in Florence.