Designing the Virgin's House: Annunciation in Renaissance Florence

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Designing the Virgin's House: Annunciation in Renaissance Florence

Date and time

Monday 9 June, 1–1.45pm

Sainsbury Wing Theatre

Paul Davies

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The Virgin Mary's house was imagined countless times by 15th-century Florentine artists. Sometimes humble, sometimes grand, it was cast by painters in many different forms. This lecture will explore the contrasting ways in which artists charged with the challenge of painting Mary's house dealt with the issue of decorum.

It goes on to consider how the miraculous image of the Virgin Annunciate in SS. Annunziata - the most celebrated miracle-working image of its time in Florence - and its architectural housing commissioned by Piero de' Medici affected paintings of the Annunciation in the second half of the 15th century.

Dr Paul Davies

Dr Paul Davies is Reader in the History of Architecture at Reading University. He is the author of a number of books on Italian Renaissance architecture and is the editor of a series of books entitled 'Architecture in Early Modern Italy'. He is currently cataloguing the Renaissance architectural drawings in the Royal Library at Windsor Castle that once belonged to Cassiano del Pozzo.

Lunchtime talks

Focus in on one painting with our talks in the Gallery, or explore wider themes in the collection at our in-depth theatre talks.

Image above: Detail from Zanobi Strozzi, 'The Annunciation', about 1440-5