Giovanni Battista Braccelli: Oddities of Various Figures (1624)

11 November 2013, dusan

“The fifty plates of the Oddities of Various Figures [Bizzarie di Varie Figure], issued in Livorno in 1624, are the liveliest and most original etchings of a highly creative, if little known, Florentine artist, Giovanni Battista d’Antonio Braccelli (active 1616–1649). The Bizzarie exhibit characteristics of Mannerism, which originated in Italy in the sixteenth century. [..]

Most of the images in the Bizzarie consist of pairs of dynamic figures constructed from fabricated elements, such as wooden boxes or frames, square and round metal links, metal plates, cylindrical containers, braided hair, wooden screws, twisted wax tapers, and so forth. Their poses are suggestive of tumblers, acrobats, contortionists, dancers, duelists, sportsmen, and actors. The bodies constructed of cubic forms recall the amazingly abstract drawings of the sixteenth-century Genoese painter Luca Cambiaso (1527–1588). Some of the most imaginative poses are impossibly contorted and bring to mind deceptive stunts or magic tricks—bodies gliding through themselves or each other.” (from a commentary by Sue Welsh Reed, 11 pages)

PDF (56 MB, updated on 2018-12-30)
PDF (clean low-resolution version, 11 MB, updated on 2018-12-30)
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