Behind the Surface of Raphael's Drawings

Research Seminar

  • Date: May 7, 2018
  • Time: 13:00
  • Speaker: Angelamaria Aceto
  • Location: Villino Stroganoff, Via Gregoriana 22, 00187 Rom
  • Host: Bibliotheca Hertziana - Max-Planck-Institut für Kunstgeschichte
  • Contact: paulinyi@biblhertz.it
Behind the Surface of Raphael's Drawings
This seminar will explore Raphael's use of materials and techniques in drawing and in doing so will present new discoveries. Over the past thirty years, approaches to the study of works on paper have gradually moved beyond univocal questions of connoisseurship. Recent research has demonstrated the effectiveness of looking at drawings as archaeological objects, whose materiality and stratigraphy can speak of their history.
Questions on materials and techniques provide new insights into the cognitive and gestural nature of drawing, while analytical methods - from visual examination supported by common tools or by more sophisticated non-invasive technologies - can be an effective aid to uncover major information. Raphael offers an extraordinary case-study. From chalks to charcoal, inks, washes and metalpoints, there is no medium that he did not use, exploiting each of their potential to create objects of extreme beauty and eloquence. In looking at a range of drawings across his career, particular emphasis will be given to his employment of 'blind stylus' or punta acroma, a technique with which an artist scored the paper with a stylus that left no visible mark, aside from an indentation.

Research Seminar coordinated by David Zagoury.

Angelamaria Aceto
currently at the Bibliotheca Hertziana as a Museum Fellow, works for the Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford. She has collaborated on a major Leverhulme-funded research project devoted to Raphael and on the hugely successful exhibition Raphael: the Drawings (Ashmolean Museum, 1 June-3 September 2017). Her forthcoming publications on Raphael reflect her longstanding interest in the use, function and materiality of drawings.
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