Collecting Art in the Italian Renaissance Court: Objects and Exchanges


Leah R. Clark, The Open University, Milton Keynes


June 2018


Cambridge University Press, ISBN 9781108427722


In this book, Leah R. Clark examines collecting practices across the Italian Renaissance court, exploring the circulation, exchange, collection, and display of objects. Rather than focusing on patronage strategies or the political power of individual collectors, she uses the objects themselves to elucidate the dynamic relationships formed through their exchange. Her study brings forward the mechanisms that structured relations within the court, and most importantly, also with individuals, representations, and spaces outside the court. The volume examines the courts of Italy through the wide variety of objects - statues, paintings, jewellery, furniture, and heraldry - that were valued for their subject matter, material forms, histories, and social functions. As Clark shows, the late fifteenth-century Italian court an be located not only in the body of the prince, but also in the objects that constituted symbolic practices, initiated political dialogues, caused rifts, created memories, and formed associations.




1. Carafa's testa di cavallo: the life of a bronze gifthorse

2. Practices of exchange: merchant bankers and the circulation of objects

3. Intertextuality and collection at the court of Ferrara: Roberti's Diptych

4. The Order of the Ermine: collars, cloaks, and the circulation of the sign.



To unsubscribe from the MAT-REN list, click the following link: