Started in 1994, The Course offers Art History, Literature, Music and Opera Lectures.
In Princely Patronage, a series of 10 lectures, we will examine how for nearly two centuries, some dozen city states waged war and their leaders competed to create spheres of both authority and magnificence. Artists from Italy and abroad flourished, moving from court to court, sharing influences and creating ever more sumptuous environments. This series examines the role of the ruling families, their spectacular personalities and projects, and the values of the age in driving this artistic flowering.
Poets and Soldiers
The d’Este rulers of Ferrara created an environment of taste and magnificence, brick and marble, of the finest paintings, in a city which they made a model of early urban planning and is now a Unesco World Heritage site. Much of their collections is now dispersed, but we will consider their impact as well as that of the sculpture, architecture and painting which remain. In contrast, the Sforza of Milan were terrifying warlords but also commissioned some of Leonardo’s finest work during his 18 years at their court.