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Title: Imitation, quotation and inventiveness in the oeuvre of Stefano Erardi (1630-1716)
Authors: Casha, Samuel John (2020)
Keywords: Painting, Maltese
Painting, Baroque -- Malta
Erardi, Stefano, 1630-1716 -- Criticism and interpretation
Issue Date: 2020
Citation: Casha, S. J. (2020). Imitation, quotation and inventiveness in the oeuvre of Stefano Erardi (1630-1716) (Master's dissertation).
Abstract: This dissertation primarily seeks to delve deeper into this aspect of imitation and quotation within Erardi’s practice and its implications on the artist’s inventiveness when such practices are considered within the appropriate intellectual climate of the seventeenth century. The life of the artist, his works and the related archives have been extensively researched and published. It is not the scope of this dissertation to add to the artist’s biography or oeuvre, or to discover unpublished documents. The central subject of the study is rather the uncovering and analysis of Erardi’s sources and inspirations and, perhaps more importantly, his motivations behind them. Archival research, already exhausted by Sciberras and Bernadine Scicluna among others, is thus beyond the study’s remit. This dissertation engages predominantly with secondary sources on Erardi himself and discussions on and around the subject of artistic imitation throughout the progress of art history. Some of the most imperative of the consulted secondary sources played a major role in forming the understanding and therefore the backbone of some of the dissertation’s most essential arguments. Sciberras’s argument that Erardi’s quotation reflected the practices of contemporary classicists was immediately substantiated by two readings of particular importance – Maria H. Loh’s article New and Improved: Repetition and Originality in Italian Baroque Practice and Theory (2004) and Elizabeth Cropper’s publication The Domenichino Affair: Novelty, Imitation and Theft in Seventeenth-century Rome (2005). Both studies excellently argued the markedly different views, as opposed to the general modern perception, that seventeenth-century contemporaries held of artists and artworks which explicitly integrated motifs from the works of other masters within one’s novel compositions. Loh’s discussion on the concept of the ‘double pleasure’, reiterated by Cropper, proved crucial for the intellectual development of this dissertation. Cropper’s arguments on contemporary perceptions of imitation and originality in light of Lanfranco’s accusation of Domenichino’s supposed ‘theft’ and the subsequent controversy were likewise of considerable importance.
Description: M.A.HIST.OF ART
Appears in Collections:Dissertations - FacArt - 2020
Dissertations - FacArtHa - 2020

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