• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

The image of the ideal wife in early modern Venice in art and text.

Extracts from this document...


Emily Wheating. HART 2225: Art and Power in Renaissance Venice. Dr. Maria Loh. 1. The image of the ideal wife in early modern Venice in art and text. The Republic of Venice otherwise known as La Serenissima had a reputation for its security and political unity. It had a reputation for its 'unsullied liberty, unwavering religiousity, social harmony and unfailingly peaceful intentions.'1 Art was used throughout the city to show and teach social and political virtues and expectations, according to Muir 'artistic patronage became an arm of government.' In consideration of this it was also a way of social propaganda, as high ranking members of the scuolas including the Dukes and Doges could depict them selves performing virtuous acts, thus promoting their reputation in the eyes of the republic. Venetian art depicting women at home gave a portrayal of what was expected from women in a domestic environment, and by their husbands. There was a strong family ethic within Venice promoting civic unity and strength, which was paramount in the running of the state. The images were all made how society expected the wife to be and what stereotypes were imposed upon women. All images of women were depicted through the eyes of men, and how they wished for others to perceive their household. ...read more.


There are various aspects of the works that support this. She is placed on the dexter side5, however there is a claim that Federigo de Montefeltro had a facial deformity on the right hand side of his face, and was therefore always painted showing his best side. Apart from this, there are other aspects of the portrait that are Sfora Battista's favour. According to what was considered fashionable at the time her skin was very pale with hardly any shadowing. The pale sky is tonally very similar and brings out the pale colouring of her skin, emphasising its purity and clarity. In contrast to smooth texture of her skin the folds of the white cloth at the back of her head and the pearls hanging from her neck and the rest of her accessories are very detailed. The fact that our attention is drawn to her jewellery and clothing make us focus on her high ranking and social status. The two paintings come as a pair, however are linked and made whole by the contiguous background, and the matching triumphs painted on the other side. The backgrounds are subtly gendered in their content. Behind the woman there are small images of households. Behind her husband images of boats, similar to the background of Carpaccio's painting, showing more male activities. ...read more.


In reality she is a good and faithful wife, and should be loved and honoured by her husband accordingly. Visually we are made to sympathise with the woman, as her side of the story as a victim is portrayed to us first, as the painting is read from right to left. The woman is depicted with two other women, one holding her own child so that she can directly be compared to the woman who is having her child taken away from her, making us more sympathetic to her case. Titian is effectively campaigning for the necessity of the mother in the family life, as the painting is ultimately in support of the accused wife. Women in Venice were an essential part in the running of the household and family life. Good wives were celebrated for their virtues, which were specifically expressed in portraits and representations of domestic scenes. Veronese shows a wife being honoured for her contribution to the family name, whereas Titian shows a wife disgraced for not performing her familial duties. However in both cases the importance of the women in the nurture and domestic environment is demonstrated in both images. Masters of the household who had wives that would effectively add to the prestige of their family ranking and lineage honoured their wives through their portraiture, thus making eternal the contribution and importance they had to the family. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Geoffrey Chaucer section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Geoffrey Chaucer essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Media Analysis - Merchant of Venice

    4 star(s)

    A special fx they have capitalised on is using the sheer natural elegance of Venice in many camera shots such as, at the start the man being thrown off the Rialto Bridge. Camera close ups are successfully used especially with the brilliant facial expressions of Antonio for example in the

  2. The Catcher in the Rye Journal Personal responses to the text

    I can sit there for quite a while debating who to call. "They gave me this very crumby room, with nothing to look out of the window at except the other side of the hotel." Pg. 61 When I went to Florida this summer we had to stay in a hotel over night because we drove down there.

  1. The Jerry Show.

    No no no. It couldn't have been withdrawals. It would require too many people to actually show up to do the withdrawing. It would have to have been removed in small chunks if they were to avoid suspicion, and you can't steal trillions of credits in small chunks.

  2. saving private ryan

    normally divided audience could effectively rally together around this new and more personal version of its national history. Saving Private Ryan, by rousing this new national consciousness, proved itself to be a truly modern historical document. It successfully united a population that remains greatly distanced from the brutalities of war around a fictionalized but hyper-realistic presentation of a historic battle.

  1. Great expectations

    This shows how Dickens has used the setting of the chapter as a way to communicate emotions, the main themes as well as give hints to the audience as to what will happen later on in the story. This will make them want to read on to find out whether their predictions are correct.

  2. Gangster Love

    His cool manner had now completely disintegrated and was replaced with a blunt comportment. At this stage we both realised that we were in a stale mate situation and that neither of us would concede defeat. I had to intensify the pace.

  1. The Shawshank Redemption Critique

    From then on Andy is always working on something. He improves the library, helps other prisoners to study and also does all the money work for the warden. Throughout this film many themes are shown, but the most important one would be friendship.

  2. Stereotypes and general representation in magazines

    is a magazine about celebrities, you are able to assume that this kind of magazine would contain fashion advertisements and ways to attract men. As this kind of magazine would also interest teens they would display the latest technical devices such as phones and special deals.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work