Role of Venetian Renaissance Painting in John Ruskin’s Utopian Theories. A Sociopolitical History of Art

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Explores the importance of Venetian Renaissance paintings in the writings and political theories of John Ruskin. While the city and the architecture of Renaissance Venice has been extensively examined by Ruskin scholars, to date there has been little discussion on the influence of Venetian art on Ruskin’s world view. This book examines important Venetian paintings and how their iconography and pictorial components relate to themes in Ruskin’s writings. From these paintings, the book argues that Ruskin found inspiration for the conceptualization of his ideal society in which society exists harmoniously under the laws of justice, obedience, and cooperation.

Table of Contents

List of Illustations

Preface by James Spates



Chapter 1: Ruskin and the Critical Reception of Venetian Painting in British Culture, 1651-1852

Chapter 2: Solomonic Imagery and the Virtue of Justice in Venetian Art and Ruskin's Political Writings

Chapter 3: Ruskin's Concepts of Kinship and Venetian Depiction of Doges

Chapter 4: Ruskin, St. George's Guild, and Confraternity Paintings in Renaissance Venice

Chapter 5: Virgin Martyrs and the Virgin Mary: Ruskin and the Feminine Ideal in Venetian Renaissance Painting



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