The Imagining of Community in European Art and Architecture, 1140-1617: Envisioning Transcendence of, Authority in, and Foundations for Community (Hardback)David B. Greene
Hardback Published: 01/02/2010
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This book takes up six sets of works of art that imagine community. These works do not illustrate concepts of community or make community an explicit theme. The particular techniques and structure of each work project an imagining of community that is unique to the piece. Studying the six sets together opens prospects for re-imagining community and lays the groundwork for re-imagining the relation of arts and society. Imagining community means imagining genuinely taking part in a community while genuinely maintaining individual integrity. While participating in and transcending one's community challenge each other, some paintings by the Limbourgs (for a "book of hours"), Penigino ("Delivery of the Keys") and Tintoretto ("Vulcan Surprising Venus and Mars") helpfully imagine specific fusions of belonging and yet not belonging to community. Some works of art that imagine community speak to the legitimacy of the power by which leaders transcend the group. Botticelli's Medici paintings imagine a community in which power has become authority and leaders and community feel mutually obligated because all are ennobled by a particular kind of love that is both personal and civic. Communities often imagine an enduring foundation for their values and organization, which support legitimate authority, communal participation and transcendence. Modernity has problematicized foundations. Some Christian and Moslem houses of worship address this issue by imagining their foundation and clarifying the nature of its validity.
Publisher: The Edwin Mellen Press Ltd