Body Politics in the Italian and Spanish Renaissance
Victor I. Stoichita, University of Fribourg
This lecture series deals with the belief in the power of the gaze in Renaissance art and culture and with the impact of this belief on artistic representation.
Lecture 2: Faces and Shields
The second lecture focuses on Renaissance portraits as settings of optical conflicts. If the portrait exhibits the person, how can it be protected?
This lecture will consider the neuropsychological notion of “peripersonal space”, the region of space immediately surrounding our bodies within which objects can be grasped and manipulated. The gaze will be considered in its agency, able to act within this space. Works by Dürer, Raphael, and northern Italian artists will serve to illustrate this phenomenon.
In the twentieth Canto of Tasso’s Gerusalemme Liberata the Saracen witch Armida recognizes her defeat: neither her armed hand, nor her malefic gaze can penetrate Rinaldo’s magic armour:
Victor I. Stoichita was educated in Bucharest, Rome, Munich and Paris. He has taught at many European and American Universities including the universities of Madrid, Jerusalem, Harvard, Göttingen, Frankfurt, Santiago de Chile, the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) and at the Collège de France in Paris. He was a fellow at the Institute of Advances Study in Princeton, at the Getty Center for Humanities in Los Angeles, at the Wissenschaftskolleg in Berlin and at the Center for Advanced Study in Visual Arts in Washington D.C. Since 1991 he has taught Art History at the University of Fribourg (Switzerland). He is a Foreign Member of the Accademia dei Lincei (Italy) and Associated Member of the Académie Royale de Belgique. In 2014 he held the Chaire du Louvre, with the topic L'Image de l'Autre. Noirs, Juifs, Musulmans et Gitans dans l'art occidental des Tempes modernes (published by Hazan, Paris in 2014). He is author of many art historical books translated into a dozen languages. Among his most recent publications are: The Self-Aware Image. An Insight into Early Modern Metapainting (new improved, and updated edition), Harvey Miller Publishers, Turnhout, 2015; L'Effet Sherlock Holmes. Variations du regard de Manet à Hitchcock, Hazan, Paris, 2015 and Über einige telepatische Dispositive / On some Telepatic Dispositifs ("Panofsky Lecture" 2016 at the Zentralinstitut für Kunstgeschichte Munich), Deutscher Kunstverlag, Munich / Berlin, 2016. His memory book Oublier Bucarest, (Actes Sud, Arles, 2014) was awarded by the Académie Française. In 2014 he was also awarded the Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres of the French Republic.