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The Lives of the Painters, Sculptors & Architects, Volume 1 (of 8)   By: (1511-1574)

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"The Lives of the Painters, Sculptors & Architects" by Giorgio Vasari is a monumental work that provides readers with a comprehensive and enlightening exploration of the lives and artistry of numerous prominent figures from the Renaissance era. This first volume, the beginning of an eight-part series, delves into the fascinating worlds of renowned artists, offering a unique perspective on their lives and their magnificent creations.

Vasari's dedication to his subject matter is evident throughout the book. His meticulous research and attention to detail shine through, as he presents readers with a wealth of information about each artist, their background, influences, and the context in which their works were created. This meticulous approach not only adds credibility to the text but also makes it an invaluable resource for art enthusiasts and scholars alike.

One of the most intriguing aspects of this book is Vasari's ability to humanize these revered artists, flaws and all. He goes beyond simply highlighting their artistic accomplishments and delves into their personal lives, shedding light on their quirks, ambitions, rivalries, and triumphs. By doing so, he provides readers with a deeper understanding of the artists as individuals, which makes their creations even more meaningful.

Vasari's eloquent writing style further contributes to the overall enjoyment of this volume. His prose is beautifully crafted, effortlessly transporting readers to various historical periods and immersing them in the vivid worlds of these legendary artists. Although the book is filled with factual information, Vasari's expressive language and storytelling abilities make it a pleasure to read, ensuring that readers remain engaged throughout.

Additionally, the inclusion of numerous reproductions of the artists' works enhances the reading experience. These visuals enable readers to appreciate the artistry discussed in the text and give a tangible sense of the incredible talent possessed by these individuals. The combination of Vasari's insightful analyses and the accompanying artwork is profoundly enriching, providing a holistic understanding of the artists and their creations.

One aspect of this book that some readers may find overwhelming is its sheer volume. Clocking in at eight volumes in total, it requires significant commitment and dedication to fully absorb all the content. However, this is ultimately a testament to the vast knowledge Vasari imparts, and for those willing to invest the time, the reward is immeasurable.

"The Lives of the Painters, Sculptors & Architects" is a masterfully executed work that succeeds in its aim to educate, inspire, and provoke a sense of awe in its readers. Giorgio Vasari's passionate exploration of Renaissance artists and their contributions to the world of art is both informative and captivating. Whether one is an art lover, history enthusiast, or simply curious about the lives of these cultural icons, this book is an invaluable resource that will undoubtedly leave a lasting impression.

First Page:


E text prepared by Roy Brown




In Eight Volumes

Vol. One


CIMABUE (1240 1302) ARNOLFO DI LAPO (1232 1310) BONANNO (fl. 1174 1186 LAPO (1190 1260) NICCOLA AND GIOVANNI PISANI fl 1205, 1278, 1250 1328) ANDREA TAFI (1250 1320) GADDO GADDI (1259 1333) MARGARITONE (1210 1293) GIOTTO (1267 1337) PUCCIO CAPANNA (fl. 1350) AGOSTINO AND AGNOLO (fl. 1286 1330) STEFANO AND UGOLINO (1301 1350, 1260 1339) PIETRO LAURATI (died c. 1350) ANDREA PISANO (1270 1348) BUONAMICO BUFFALMACCO (fl. 1311 1351) AMBRUOGIO LORENZETTI (died c. 1338) PIETRO CAVALLINI (1259 1334) SIMONE MARTINI AND LIPPO MEMMI (1285 1344; died 1357)


I am aware that it is commonly held as a fact by most writers that sculpture, as well as painting, was naturally discovered originally by the people of Egypt, and also that there are others who attribute to the Chaldeans the first rough carvings of statues and the first reliefs. In like manner there are those who credit the Greeks with the invention of the brush and of colouring. But it is my opinion that design, which is the creative principle in both arts, came into existence at the time of the origin of all things... Continue reading book >>

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