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History of Art Society

History of Art Society: Dr Simon Oakes on Sebastiano del Piombo



Dr Simon Oakes, of St John’s College, Oxford, came to address the History of Art Society on the subject of the Venetian painter Sebastiano del Piombo. He gave a brilliant survey of this artist's work in Venice and showed how he developed Giovanni Bellini's style into a more monumental and ambitious form, showing already a passionate interest in Roman statuary and drama. Dr Oakes showed how profoundly Sebastiano impressed the young Titian and dealt with a number of fascinating questions of attribution. He concluded by explaining how once he had arrived in Rome Sebastiano worked with Michelangelo to compete against Raphael and showed how quickly he introduced Venetian colour and sensuality into the Central Italian concerns with 'disegno' and composition.


This was a challenging and sometimes provocative talk, and it was thoroughly enjoyed by the large audience (23 boys and two beaks) that came to the Marten Library to hear it.




DATE POSTED: 13 February 2009

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