The Aesthetics of Water: How Venice Conquered the World

Presenter: Patricia Fortini Brown

Thoughts of Venice conjure up a city surrounded by water, as depicted in Jacopo de Barbari’s woodcut map of 1500, one of Mia’s treasures. Yet, before the modern era, the city had no source of freshwater except from rains or brought by barges. This talk addresses how Venetians rose to the challenge by creating a unique genre of public art—the Venetian wellhead—along with fountains that transformed urban spaces from the Terraferma to the Stato da Mar into gathering places of aesthetic delight.

Patricia Fortini Brown is professor emerita at Princeton University’s Department of Art & Archaeology. Brown was Slade Professor of Fine Arts at the University of Cambridge and served as president of the Renaissance Society of America. A recipient of the British Academy Serena Medal in Italian Studies, she has held a Guggenheim Fellowship and the Rome Prize, and presently serves on the Board of Trustees of Save Venice. Her award-winning books include Art and Life in Renaissance Venice (1997) and Private Lives in Renaissance Venice: Art, Architecture, and the Family (2004). She is now working on a book, The Venetian Bride, a true story of vendetta and intrigue, exile, and redemption.

Co-presented with the Italian Cultural Center Minneapolis/St Paul

$10; $5 My Mia members, free for members of the Prints & Drawings Affinity Group. To register click here or call 612.870.6323.