Wednesday, September 15th 2021
Welcome cocktail at 6:00pm
Presentation begins at 6:15pm

As one of the authors of the Renaissance, the painter and mathematician Piero della Francesca was aware of rebirth and history, and therefore of time. Yet, time is not a natural medium of painting. How did Piero, whose works are often characterized as silent, solemn, and static, depict it? How did he grapple with the infiniteness of heaven and nature as opposed to the finiteness of humankind? How did he present his era in relation to history? How did he present progression in his stories? How did he render the hour? How did he gear space to become also a temporal medium? An understanding of Piero’s depiction of time can help us grasp the intended meaning of his works, now orphans in time. By first attuning our eyes to his temporality in the mural cycle of the Legend of the True Cross in Arezzo, which encompasses human history from Creation to Piero’s day, we will address a narrative work that has proved less straightforward in its interpretation, the Flagellation in Urbino.

Machtelt Brüggen Israëls is an art historian living in Amsterdam and Tuscany. She is a professor of Italian Renaissance Art at the University of Amsterdam and the Università di Firenze. Machtelt held a fellowship at Harvard’s Villa I Tatti, for which she edited books on Sassetta’s masterpiece for Sansepolcro and the Italian paintings in the Berenson Collection. Her monograph on Piero della Francesca was published in London in 2020.

We ask that you write to to reserve a spot as we will close reservations after the first twenty requests, and reservations, free, are mandatory in this period.  We wish we could accommodate more people but our safety and health protocols do not permit that at this time.  

As always, we welcome you with a light refreshment.  Please bring your green pass or proof of vaccination and wear masks inside the Castle.