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The Genius of Andrea Mantegna

The Genius of Andrea Mantegna
[adapted from The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, v. 67, no. 2 (Fall, 2009)]

Christiansen, Keith
64 pages
70 illustrations
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Few artists have managed to imprint their personality so indelibly on posterity as Andrea Mantegna (c. 1430–1506). Before he reached the age of twenty, Mantegna was already being praised for his alto ingegno (exalted genius), and he became the court artist for the Gonzaga family in Mantua before he was thirty. Yet, this book argues, Mantegna was not simply a great painter. Together with Donatello, he was the defining genius of the fifteenth century: the measure of what an artist could be. His highly original and deeply personal vision, the descriptive richness of his pictures, and his biting, hypercritical but always exalted mind gave Mantegnas art an extraordinary edge and earned him a preeminent place in the Renaissance.

The Adoration of the Shepherds, Andrea Mantegna  Italian, Tempera on canvas, transferred from wood
shortly after 1450
Madonna and Child with Seraphim and Cherubim, Andrea Mantegna  Italian, Tempera and gold on wood
ca. 1454
The Holy Family with Saint Mary Magdalen, Andrea Mantegna  Italian, Distemper on canvas
ca. 1495–1500
Hercules and Antaeus, Gian Marco Cavalli  Italian, Engraving; main figures and parts of tree pricked for transfer
ca. 1497
The Flagellation, with the Pavement, Gian Marco Cavalli  Italian, Engraving
Before 1480
The Entombment of Christ, Andrea Mantegna  Italian, Engraving and drypoint; second state of two
before 1475
The Risen Christ between Saints Andrew and Longinus, Andrea Mantegna  Italian, Engraving
ca. 1475
Bacchanal with a Wine Vat, Andrea Mantegna  Italian, Engraving and drypoint
Before 1475
Bacchanal with Silenus, Andrea Mantegna  Italian, Engraving with drypoint
before 1475
Ignorance and Mercury (an allegory of Virtue and Vice), Mercury kneeling at right holding a staff and taking the hand of a man who emerges from a pile of naked bodies, at left a tree with the torso and head of a woman (Daphne), Giovanni Antonio da Brescia  Italian, Engraving
ca. 1490–1525

View Citations

Christiansen, Keith, and Andrea Mantegna, eds. 2009. The Genius of Andrea Mantegna. New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art.