Giorgio Vasari

Giorgio Vasari (jôr´jō väzä´rē), 1511–74, Italian architect, writer, and painter. He is best known for his entertaining biographies of artists, Vite de' più eccellenti architetti, pittori e scultori italiani (1550, rev. ed. 1568), which began with Cimabue and ended with Michelangelo. The standard modern edition is that annotated by Gaetano Milanesi (1878), translated into English by Gaston de Vere as Lives of the Artists (10 vol., 1912–14). Though much of Vasari's information is incorrect or embellished, his work is the basic source of our knowledge of Renaissance and mannerist artists. He is most enlightening in the discussion of his contemporaries and less trustworthy for 14th- and 15th-century artists. A mannerist himself, Vasari executed paintings in the Palazzo Vecchio at Florence and the Sala Regia in the Vatican and made portraits of the Medici. His major architectural works include the Uffizi in Florence and churches and palaces in Arezzo and in Pisa.

See biography by I. Rowland and N. Charney (2017); study by E. Rud (1963).

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright© 2018, The Columbia University Press.

Giorgio Vasari: Selected full-text books and articles

FREE! Lives of Seventy of the Most Eminent Painters, Sculptors & Architects By Giorgio Vasari; E. H. Blashfield; E. W. Blashfield; A. A. Hopkins Charles Scribner's Sons, vol.4, 1902
Vasari on Theatre By Giorgio Vasari; Thomas A. Pallen Southern Illinois University Press, 1999
Readings in Italian Mannerism By Liana De Girolami Cheney Peter Lang, 1997
Librarian's tip: "Vasari's Position as an Exponent of the Maniera Style" begins on p. 9
Genius and the Mind: Studies of Creativity and Temperament By Andrew Steptoe Oxford University Press, 1998
Librarian's tip: "Vasari's Background" begins on p. 258
Artistic Theory in Italy, 1450-1600 By Anthony Blunt The Clarendon Press, 1940
Librarian's tip: Chap. VII "Vasari"
The Letters of Michelangelo By Michelangelo Buonarroti; E. H. Ramsden Stanford University Press, vol.2, 1963
Librarian's tip: Chap. 39 "Michelangelo and Giorgio Vasari"
A primary source is a work that is being studied, or that provides first-hand or direct evidence on a topic. Common types of primary sources include works of literature, historical documents, original philosophical writings, and religious texts.
The History of Art History By Udo Kultermann Abaris Books, 1993
Librarian's tip: Chap. I "Artists Histories"
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