No city but Florence contains such an intense concentration of art produced in such a short span of time: the 1300s through the 1500s. The sheer number and proximity of works of painting, sculpture, and architecture in Florence can be so overwhelming that Florentine hospitals treat hundreds of visitors each year for symptoms brought on by trying to see them all, an illness first described by the French author Stendhal, and today known as ďStendhalís Syndrome.Ē
While most guidebooks offer only brief descriptions of a large number of works of art, with little discussion of the historical background or meaning, this book concentrates on the greatest masterpieces, by such masters as Botticelli and Michelangelo.
If you thought Renaissance art was only about religion--all churches, altarpieces of saints, and Madonna and Child paintings, guess again. Nearly every work of religious art of that era has some political dimension. Some also have surprising sexual meanings, although ordinary guidebooks arenít going to tell you about that.
With this volume as a guide, armchair travelers and tourists alike will delight in the fascinating world of Florentine art and history. My book isnít for scholars of Renaissance art--itís for general readers who want to deepen their enjoyment in visiting the city thatís the ultimate art loverís paradise!