Michelangelo’s Painting

Selected Essays

Leo Steinberg

Michelangelo’s Painting

Leo Steinberg

Edited by Sheila Schwartz
432 pages | 124 color plates, 122 halftones | 8 1/2 x 11 | © 2018 
Cloth $65.00 ISBN: 9780226482262 Will Publish January 2019
E-book $65.00 ISBN: 9780226482439 Will Publish January 2019
Leo Steinberg was one of the most original art historians of the twentieth century, known for taking interpretive risks that challenged the profession by overturning reigning orthodoxies. In essays and lectures that ranged from old masters to contemporary art, he combined scholarly erudition with an eloquent prose that illuminated his subject and a credo that privileged the visual evidence of the image over the literature written about it. His writings, sometimes provocative and controversial, remain vital reading.
          For half a century, Steinberg delved into Michelangelo’s work, revealing the symbolic structures underlying the artist’s highly charged idiom. This volume of essays and unpublished lectures elucidates many of Michelangelo’s paintings, from frescoes in the Sistine Chapel to the Conversion of St. Paul and the Crucifixion of St. Peter, the artist’s lesser-known works in the Vatican’s Pauline Chapel; also included is a study of the relationship of the Doni Madonna to Leonardo.
          Steinberg’s perceptions evolved from long, hard looking.  Almost everything he wrote included passages of old-fashioned formal analysis, but always put into the service of interpretation. He understood that Michelangelo’s rendering of figures, as well as their gestures and interrelations, conveys an emblematic significance masquerading under the guise of naturalism. Michelangelo pushed Renaissance naturalism into the furthest reaches of metaphor, using the language of the body to express fundamental Christian tenets once expressible only by poets and preachers.
          Michelangelo’s Paintings is the second volume in a series that presents Steinberg’s writings, selected and edited by his longtime associate Sheila Schwartz.
Contents
Preface and Acknowledgments, Sheila Schwartz
Introduction, Alexander Nagel
 
1. Disconnections: The Doni Madonna and Leonardo’s St. Anne
2. The Sistine Deluge
3. Who’s Who in the Creation of Adam
4. All about Eve
5. A New Michelangelo
6. Why Michelangelo Huddled Those Ancestors under That Ceiling
7. The Last Judgment as Merciful Heresy
8. A Corner of the Last Judgment
9. The Last Judgment and Environs
10. The Line of Fate in Michelangelo’s Painting
11. Michelangelo’s Last Paintings
 
Notes
Leo Steinberg: Chronology
Leo Steinberg: Publications (1947–2010)
Photography Credits
Index
For more information, or to order this book, please visit http://www.press.uchicago.edu
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