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05 December 2019Tintoretto and the Scuola di San Rocco
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Tintoretto and the Scuola di San Rocco Sian Walters Thursday 05 December 2019

Please note this lecture starts at 10.45am.

The Venetian scuole were semi-religious confraternities or guilds bound together by profession, nationality or devotion and the Scuola dedicated to St Roch was one of the wealthiest and most prestigious, enabling its members to fund the construction and decoration of a splendid new headquarters. The vast canvases which cover the walls and ceiling of this elegant Renaissance building represent one of the most ambitious artistic projects of the 16th century and one of the greatest achievements of their creator, Jacopo Tintoretto, a project encompassing around 60 paintings to which he dedicated well over 20 years of his life.  We examine how Tintoretto was able to secure this celebrated commission, and explore the genesis and development of the series. The lecture assesses how these moving and dramatic paintings reflect the teachings and activities of their patrons, and considers their impact and influence on subsequent generations of artists including Rubens, Velázquez and El Greco, who famously praised Tintoretto’s Crucifixion as being the greatest painting in the world.

Siân Walters is an art historian and lectures for the National Gallery, The Arts Society, The Wallace Collection, Friends of the Royal Academy, The London Art History Society, The Art Fund and many other art societies and colleges in the UK and Europe. She was also a lecturer at Surrey University for many years. Having graduated from Cambridge University, Siân spent four years in Italy and France where she worked for the Peggy Guggenheim Museum and the eminent scholar H.C. Robbins Landon. As well as running Art History in Focus, she spends much of the year lecturing abroad, particularly in Italy and Spain, and is well known for her enthusiastic, structured yet informal approach. Siân is delighted to have been nominated by an independent travel company in 2008 and 2009 for the Daily Telegraph’s Best Guide Award. In 2016 she was named a Highly Commended finalist in the Wanderlust World’s Best Guide Awards.