cover image Renaissance from Brune

Renaissance from Brune

Rizzoli. Rizzoli International Publications, $85 (731pp) ISBN 978-0-8478-1828-0

Renaissance architects Michelangelo, Filippo Brunelleschi and Giovanni de'Medici used scale models--mostly in wood, but also in clay, cardboard and metal--to analyze project designs, for presentation purposes and as guides to construction. This ravishing catalogue of an exhibition in Venice, which travels to Washington's National Gallery in 1995, features 30-odd models of completed or unrealized projects, accompanied by paintings, illuminated codices, inlaid panels, sculptures, drawings and prints reproduced in 1000 plates (300 in color). One highlight is Antonio de Sangallo's colossal, walk-through model of St. Peter's Basilica. Essays by architectural historians and curators throw fresh light on Renaissance architecture, revealing, for example, that sculpture was planned as an integral part of building exteriors and interiors to a much greater extent than hitherto suspected. (Sept.)