The Department of History of Art/Graduate Department of Art is pleased to announce that Giancarla Periti’s In the Courts of Religious Ladies: Art, Vision and Pleasure in Italian Renaissance Convents (2016) is the recipient of the 2016 Book Prize in the category of Renaissance, 18th and 19th centuries, awarded by the interdisciplinary American Association for Italian Studies (AAIS). Periti examines the remarkable poetic and mythological art commissioned by aristocratic female monastic communities in Renaissance Italy. Nuns from the patrician class set aside considerations of austerity and poverty, to commission rich and sensually appealing artefacts inspired by the contemporary secular culture of courts. Works of art transformed monastic parlours, abbatial apartments, and nuns’ cells into ornate settings, thereby enriching—and complicating – any simple opposition of the religious and worldly spheres. Periti’s book shows how this courtly conventual art taught its viewers to use their eyes to gain insights about the secular world that lay beyond the bounds of their monastic walls.
Many congratulations to Professor Periti.
The book is richly illustrated thanks to the generous assistance of the Lila Wallace-Reader’s Digest Publications Subsidy at Villa I Tatti. For more information, please visit the Yale University Press website.