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Giorgio Vasari’s «Prefaces»

Art and Theory- With a foreword by Wolfram Prinz

Liana De Girolami Cheney

Giorgio Vasari’s Prefaces: Art and Theory provides students and scholars alike with the opportunity to study and understand the art, theory, and visual culture of Giorgio Vasari and sixteenth century Italy. For the first time all of Vasari’s Prefaces from the Lives of the Artists (1568) are included translated into English as well as in the original Italian. Also included is an English translation of Giovanni Battista Adriani’s letter to Giorgio Vasari enlightening Vasari on the art of the ancient masters.
Through the eyes of Vasari, this book captures the creative achievements of his fellow artists – how they adopt nature and the classical tradition as their muses and how they ingeniously interpret the secular and religious themes of the past and present. Vasari himself is lauded for the transformation of the artist from one of being a mere laborer to one who imbues his work with intellectual depth and is recognized as a creator of beautiful visual myths.


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Chapter Eight


Conclusion The Author to the Craftsmen of Design Honored and noble craftsmen, for whose profit and advantage, chiefly, I set myself a second time to so long a labor, I now find that by the favor and assis- tance of the Divine Grace I have accomplished in full that which at the begin- ning of this my present task I promised myself to do. For which result rendering thanks first to God and afterwards to my lords, who have granted me the facilities whereby I have been able to do this advantageously, I must then give repose to my weary pen and brain, which I shall do as soon as I shall have made some brief observations. If then, it should appear to anyone that in my writing I have been at times rather long and even somewhat prolix, let him put it down to this, that I have sought as much as I have been able to be clear, and before any other thing to set down my story in such a manner that what has not been understood the first time, or not expressed satisfactorily by me, might be made manifest at any cost. And if what has been said once has been at times repeated in another place, the reasons for this have been two—first, that the matter that I was treating required it, and then that during the time when I rewrote and reprinted the work I broke off my writing more than once for...

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