Conferences & Lectures

Location: Worcester, MA

Throughout his brief career, the prolific and exceptionally productive Raphael relied on a network of collaborators to assist him in carrying out his altarpieces and smaller devotional images, frescoes, and architectural projects, and to realize the sculpture, tapestries, prints, and precious objects he designed. Some of Raphael’s collaborators, like Giulio Romano and Gianfrancesco Penni, were pupils and longstanding members of his workshop; others, like Timoteo Viti and Lorenzo Lotto, were friends or fellow artists who worked with the master briefly on a specific project. Expediency was often the motivation behind these short-term collaborations, as Raphael enlisted others to help him carry out a work that he was too inexperienced–or increasingly, too busy–to realize fully on his own, or that he abandoned in the course of his peregrinations that led him from Urbino to Perugia, Florence, and Rome. The symposium has been occasioned by the pairing of Raphael’s Small Cowper Madonna from the National Gallery of Art in Washington with the enigmatic Northbrook Madonna from the Worcester Art Museum. The latter work may be the product of such an artistic partnership, although the precise nature of the collaboration (if one was operating in this instance) has yet to be explicated. The works remain on display together in Worcester through September 27. Presenters included Linda Wolk-Simon, Sylvia Ferino-Padgen, Robert G. La France, Sheryl Reiss, Tom Henry, Lisa Pon, Robert Williams, and Paul Joannides. This symposium was generously supported by the Robert Lehman Foundation and the Samuel H. Kress Foundation.

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