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Sofonisba Anguissola, Hardback Book

Sofonisba Anguissola Hardback

Part of the Illuminating Women Artists series



Sofonisba Anguissola (c.1532–1625), an Italian Renaissance painter born in Cremona to a noble family, was one of the first women artists of Europe to establish an international reputation during her lifetime.

This book explores the evolution of Sofonisba Anguissola’s art from her training in Cremona, through her service at the court of Philip II in Madrid, to her later years as a married woman in Sicily and Genoa. It was at the Spanish court that Sofonisba Anguissola secured her reputation as a painter of international renown.

Therefore, the volume places special emphasis on the social, political and cultural preconditions surrounding her role and status at the Spanish court, where she became a lady-in-waiting and painting instructor to Queen Elizabeth of Valois.

In order to interrogate the circumstances of her service and her painting practice in Spain, and thus to better explain her later artistic career in Italy, the book focuses on her education, her noble status, her family ties, and her connections with noble courts in Spain and Italy.

It draws on recent discoveries made by the author, as well as archival documentation, to reinterpret Anguissola and her artistic legacy.


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