Renaissance Modern: 16th Century Innovation To Open At Courtauld Gallery

The Gilbert and Ildiko Butler Drawings Gallery, a new space within the Courtauld Gallery, presents Renaissance Modern, a collection of cutting-edge 16th century drawings which define Renaissance innovation, curated by students of The Courtauld Institute of Art and The University of Manchester.The exhibition explores draughtsmanship in Italy and Northern Europe, unveiling work from The Courtauld’s collection of drawings. Specially curated in collaboration with students from The Courtauld Institute of Art and The University of Manchester, Renaissance Modern seeks to position the works as examples of artistic innovation that changed contemporary perceptions of drawing.

Looking at what ‘modernity’ meant in the 16th Century, the young curators have selected works by Parmigianino, Ligozzi and Goltzius amongst others, whose works were deliberately new or ‘modern’ in subject matter, style and approach. It was through these drawings that Great Masters of the Renaissance experimented with movement and new forms of idealised beauty, arguably defining ‘modern’ innovation of the period. The display also highlights the transformation of the status of drawing during the Renaissance; it was the first time that drawing became the subject of artistic scrutiny in its own right.

Renaissance Modern forms an important part of the new Gilbert and Ildiko Butler Drawings Gallery’s programme, allowing young curators to experiment, trial new ideas and celebrate lesser-known artists. The new gallery is the Courtauld’s first dedicated space to celebrate The Courtauld’s collection of drawings, and encourage fresh curatorial interpretation.

Renaissance Modern is co-ordinated by Martin Halusa Curator of Drawings, Dr Stephanie Buck, and supported by Lecturer in 16th Century Southern European Art and Renaissance MA Director, Dr Guido Rebbecchio and Dr Ed Wouk, Lecturer in Art History (1450 – 1800) from The University of Manchester.

Renaissance Modern – The Courtauld Gallery – 22 April to 7 June 2015

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