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Title: The counter reformation and the decoration of Venetian churches 1563-1610 : San Giacomo dall'Orio, Santa Maria dell'Umiltà, the Redentore and San Giorgio Maggiore
Author: Lillywhite, Marie-Louise
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2013
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This thesis examines the effects that the religious changes heralded by the Counter Reformation and the decrees regarding religious imagery and the Eucharist promulgated at the Council of Trent had on the decoration of Venetian churches from the close of the Council in 1563 until the first years of the seventeenth century. Although politically Venice shielded her independence from the power of the Papacy, she nonetheless responded in conformity to the Tridentine decrees and played an important role throughout the Cinquecento as a centre for religious renewal. In turn this had an important impact on the fabric and decoration of the city’s churches, particularly in the last two decades of the Cinquecento. Focusing on four Venetian churches that were the objects of extensive decorative programmes during the late Cinquecento; San Giacomo dall’Orio, Santa Maria dell’Umiltà, the Redentore and San Giorgio Maggiore, this thesis combines archival and visual evidence to reach a deeper understanding of how the decoration of the Venetian church changed in this period. The central tenet of this thesis is that Venice made an important and early contribution towards developing the ‘ideal’ visual response required by the Council of Trent. In the immediate aftermath of the Council of Trent until the end of the century Venice enjoyed a period of important artistic renewal and achievement. This ‘golden age’ emerged in the years following Trent and in a period characterised by ongoing war and ravaging pestilence. Yet far from discouraging creative genius, the contemporary religious and political upheaval appears to have challenged artists and patrons to ever greater achievements. It thus appears that the conditions imposed by the Council of Trent created a framework within which artists could better represent the values of the renewed Catholicism of the late sixteenth century.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Arts & Humanities Research Council (Great Britain) (AHRC) ; Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: BR Christianity ; NA Architecture ; NK Decorative arts Applied arts Decoration and ornament