Richly illuminated, and illuminating. Part ii Art Talks, poised to begin.

On the 5th of January we began Episode-1 of our first five Art History and Appreciation Talks. These richly -illustrated events are hosted each week on the now-universally-familiar Zoom platform. They boast far more beautiful images however than your average Power-Point on Zoom! Instead of flow chart and pie-charts, picture instead stunning details from a Fra Angelico Annunciation, a memorial by Paulo Uccello, a portrait by van Eyck, or a Crucifixion scene by Rogier van der Weyden.

The talks are conducted live each Tuesday early afternoon (with two o’clock sharp start-time (14.00 GMT each week) Each talk is then also available within just a few hours to watch in recorded form also, for those who could not make the live event, and/or for those who simply wish to revisit the images and ideas. (The same ticket is used whether you enjoy the talk live or recorded although the links to the live and to the recorded talk are sent out to all our ticket-holder in two separate emails)

Our course so far has covered Giotto in the 1300s, through the first half of the Italian and Florentine “Quatrocento” (Masaccio, Donatello, Fra Angelico, Paulo Uccello et al) then crossed the Alps as it were last week, to enjoy the great so-called “Netherlandish Primitive ” painters like van Eyck and van der Weyden.

The “bad news” is that there is just one remaining talk in this first first cycle of 5 talks, Mantegna and Bellini – this Tuesday 2nd of February (with the recorded version hot on its heels). There are two bits of good news however, the first is it’s still possible to buy a one-off ticket for that one, individual talk, Andrea Mantegna & Giovanni Bellini here This ticket, priced €12.50 is available up to 12pm Irish time, Tuesday 2nd of February. That’s to say, until 2 hours prior to the talk .

Andrea Mantegna, Triumphs of Caesar (scene 9) painted 1485-95. Royal Collection, Hampton Court.
The San Zacharia altarpiece by Giovanni Bellini 1505, San Zacharia Church, Venice.

The second, even-better news is that there is still, as we write, some availability remaining for 5- in One tickets for the entire second half of the series. In other words a discounted 5-Talk ticket covering Talks 6 to 10 inclusive.

These five talks cover the legendary High Renaissance, with great names Botticelli, Leonardo, Michelangelo, Raphael, then progress to Italian masters of the 1600s like Caravaggio and the legendary sculptor Gian Lorenzo Bernini, then onto Dutch luminaries like Rembrandt and Vermeer. Finally, in our last week, we’ll conclude with a discussion of “Grand Tour” Art of the 1700s. (Canaletto and others)

All of the talks, as noted above are richly illuminated with examples of the best artworks and many telling details: close-ups which reveal nuances of style, of technique, composition, meaning and symbolism. Tickets for the second half of the series are priced just €50 for all 5 talks and are available here.

*This 5-in One ticket includes access to all 5 live talks and free additional access to each recorded talk, for Talks 6- 10.  All guests are entitled to watch either the live and recorded versions, of every event Talks 6- 10 or both if they so wish. A link to each talk is emailed to guests within 24 hours of the live event. (Usually much sooner) and each recorded talk is then available to view for a minimum of 7 days.

Overall, this is a gentle, highly enjoyable yet superb introduction to deepen your understanding of the great Art of Italy and the Low Countries, with stunning artworks from the mid-1440s to the mid-1700s and some of the greatest art ever made in Europe. The talks last approximately 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes. As a bonus feature, a live Q&A is also available at the end of each live talk: only for those who wish to put questions or observations to the host. (This is not recorded, for obvious date protection reasons) There is no obligation or expectation whatsoever for anyone to attend the Q&A: it is only a bonus feature for those who may wish to pose a question or remark.

The feedback so far has been extraordinary and we’re very happy and proud to be able to make it available to another 12- 15 people, subject naturally, to availability of course. If you are able we hope you will join us for this second half of the series. Tickets are available once again here.

Primavera, by Sandro Botticelli painted late 1470s or early 1480s Uffizi Gallery, Florence.
Leonardo da Vinci: Annunciation, Uffizi Gallery, Florence, painted circa 1472–1475
Jan Vermeer, The Astronomer, 1668, Louvre, Paris.

Tickets are available once again here.

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