The Bad Boy & Bad Girl of The Renaissance

Nov 13, 2018 648

Tuesday, November 27, 2018 @ 7:00 PM. The Italian Cultural Foundation at Casa Belvedere, 79 Howard Avenue, Staten Island, NY 10301. Join Us for a Presentation on the BAD BOY & "BAD" GIRL OF THE ITALIAN RENAISSANCE: BENVENUTO CELLINI - SCULPTOR & PROPERZIA DE' ROSSI - SCULPTRESS. A visual presentation and lecture by Snjezana Smodlaka, PhD.

BENVENUTO CELLINI was a Florentine goldsmith, sculptor, musician, soldier and writer. One of his most famous artworks is the exquisite, golden, miniature Saltcellar, commissioned by a French king. The other is a monumental bronze statue of Perseus with the Head of Medusa, still standing, on the main square in Florence, opposite Michelangelo's David, since 1554. Cellini worked under the patronage of Medici family, two popes and French king; was praised by Michelangelo and other contemporaries for his virtuosity and originality. Indomitable character Cellini was often accused, sentenced and imprisoned for insults, fights, brawls, love affairs with men and even several murders. He died in Florence and was buried with great honors in SS. Annunziata in his native city.

PROPERZIA DE' ROSSI was the first woman sculptor in Europe, a brilliant artist during the Italian Renaissance, and yet today we don't know the exact year of her birth or where her grave is. Whether she lived just 30 or 40 years her artistic opus is remarkable. She excelled in two completely different genres: she started first as a miniaturist, engraving miniature figures and heads of saints on a single peach, apricot or cherry pit; then in her mid twenties this passionate, courageous woman dedicated herself to sculpting and entered a highly competitive men's world. Brilliant execution of her artwork provoked envy of other sculptors; she was attacked, maligned, sued, her private life dissected, her commissioned sculptures rejected because of her "scandalous" behavior. During her life she never achieved the recognition she deserved, and died poor and alone in the hospice. Three days after her death Medici Pope Clement VII visited Bologna and asked to see her and her work.But Properzia was not there any more.
Born in Croatia, Dr. Snjezana Smodlaka obtained her B.A. in Italian Language and Literature and M.A. in Romance Philology at Zagreb University, Croatia. She was Assistant Professor at the University of Zadar for eleven years. Thirty years ago she came to the USA to continue her research and obtained her Ph.D in Italian Literature at Rutgers University. She worked as an Italian and Latin teacher for 24 years at St. Joseph Hill Academy; and as an adjunct at Wagner College, the College of Staten Island (CUNY) and Rutgers University. She has published numerous articles on Italian language and literature; and presented more than 20 papers at international conferences in the US, Croatia, Italy, Austria, Spain and Germany. For the last decade she has broadened her research on the study of the connections between Italian literature, art and music.

Please reserve in advance for this wonderful program so that we can plan accordingly. Suggested Donation for Lecture and Reception: Members: $15pp. Non-Members: $20pp (Any donations welcome and appreciated). Pre-payment is recommended and appreciated. We accept credit cards over the phone. Parking is located directly across the street at Notre Dame Academy Elementary School. For any questions or to register, please call 718-273-7660 or email

SOURCE: Casa Belvedere

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