Ficino and Fantasy: Imagination in Renaissance Art and Theory from Botticelli to Michelangelo

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Did the florentine philosopher Marsilio Ficino (1433-1499) influence the art of his time? Art historians have been fiercely debating this question for decades. This books starts with Ficino's views on the imagination as a faculty of the soul, and shows how these ideas were part of a long philosophical traditio and inspired new insights. This approach, combined with little known historical material, offers a new understanding, whether, how and why Ficino's Platonic conceptions of the imagination may have been received in the art of the Italian renaissance. The discussion explores Ficino's possible influence on the work of Botticelli and Michelangelo, and examines the appropriation of Ficino's ideas by early modern art theorists.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationLeiden/Boston
PublisherBrill Academic Publishers
Number of pages368
ISBN (Electronic)9789004459687
ISBN (Print)9789004459670
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2022
EventLecture/Book presentation Ficino and Fantasy. Imagination in Renaissance Art and Theory from Botticelli to Michelangelo: Ficino and Fantasy - Amsterdam, Academische Club, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Duration: 12 May 202212 May 2022

Publication series

NameAries Book Series
PublisherBrill Academic Publishers


  • Renaissance art
  • philosophy
  • Marsilio Ficino
  • imagination
  • phantasy
  • Botticelli
  • Michelangelo
  • Neoplatonism
  • Renaissance humanism
  • Platonism
  • art theory

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