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Book Cover
Author Brisman, Shira, author

Title Albrecht Dürer and the epistolary mode of address / Shira Brisman
Published Chicago : The University of Chicago Press, [2016]
Online access available from:
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Description 1 online resource
Contents Composing -- The body of a letter -- Sending -- The message in transit -- Relay and delay -- Receiving -- Privileged mediators -- Interception -- Dürer's open letter -- Conclusion
Summary "Art historians have long looked to letters to secure biographical details; clarify relationships between artists and patrons; and present artists as modern, self-aware individuals. This book takes a novel approach: focusing on Albrecht Dürer, Shira Brisman is the first to argue that the experience of writing, sending, and receiving letters shaped how he treated the work of art as an agent for communication. In the early modern period, before the establishment of a reliable postal system, letters faced risks of interception and delay. During the Reformation, the printing press threatened to expose intimate exchanges and blur the line between public and private life. Exploring the complex travel patterns of sixteenth-century missives, Brisman explains how these issues of sending and receiving informed Dürer's artistic practices. His success, she contends, was due in large part to his development of pictorial strategies an epistolary mode of address marked by a direct and intimate appeal to the viewer, an appeal that also acknowledges the distance and delay that defers the message before it can reach its recipient. As images, often in the form of prints, coursed through an open market, and artists lost direct control over the sale and reception of their work, Germany's chief printmaker navigated the new terrain by creating in his images a balance between legibility and concealment, intimacy and public address." -- Provided by the publisher. Provided by publisher
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references and index
Notes Print version record
Subject Dürer, Albrecht, 1471-1528 -- Correspondence.
Dürer, Albrecht, 1471-1528 -- Criticism and interpretation.
Communication and the arts -- Germany -- History -- 16th century.
Communication in art -- Germany -- History -- 16th century.
German letters -- 16th century -- History and criticism.
Visual communication -- Germany -- History -- 16th century.
Written communication -- Germany -- History -- 16th century.
Genre/Form Criticism, interpretation, etc.
Records and correspondence.
Form Electronic book
ISBN 022635489X (electronic bk.)
9780226354897 (electronic bk.)