This site uses technical, analytics and third-party cookies.
By continuing to browse, you accept the use of cookies.

Preferences cookies

Raphael and the Ladies: The Prince of Painters and Female Patrons, Collectors, and Viewers (IIC MONTREAL WEBINAR SERIES)

The Italian Cultural Institute of Chicago, in collaboration with the Italian Cultural Institutes in Los Angeles, Montreal, New York, San Francisco, Toronto and Washington D.C. are pleased to present the conference, by Sheryl Reiss entitled: “Raphael and the Ladies: The Prince of Painters and Female Patrons, Collectors, and Viewers”. Introduced and moderated by Lia Markey.

Friday, December 11, 1:00 pm EST

Click here to register

During his all-too-brief career, Raphael of Urbino (1483-1520) frequently benefited from the patronage of women and painted works intended for female viewers ranging from noblewomen to nuns. In Urbino, Città di Castello, and Perugia Raphael created large altarpieces and small, delicate paintings for women and, in what is conventionally called his Florentine period (1504-8), many of his Madonnas were for young wealthy, couples and possibly associated with betrothals, marriages, or childbirth. During his Roman years, Raphael worked for fewer women and repeatedly ignored a commission from female patrons dating to his early years. Raphael’s women patrons and viewers came from different social classes and were often linked via bonds of kinship and friendship. Topics considered in this talk include networks of female patrons that helped to shape the painter’s career; how Raphael catered to women’s tastes in different locales; and how he varied his style to suit different female patrons. A coda will address women who collected paintings by Raphael from the late sixteenth to early twentieth centuries.

Sheryl E. Reiss received her Ph.D. from Princeton University in 1992 and has lived in Chicago since 2018. She is a Scholar-in-Residence at the Newberry Library and teaches for the Graham School of the University of Chicago, the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and the University Club of Chicago. Previously, she has taught at Mount Holyoke College, Smith College, Cornell University, the University of California, Riverside, and the University of Southern California. Dr. Reiss is a specialist in Italian Renaissance art and architecture with particular interest in the history of patronage. She is also interested in women and gender; archaism in early modern art; exchange between Italy and Northern Europe; and funerary art. She is the recipient of grants and fellowships from the Samuel H. Kress Foundation, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Renaissance Society of America, the Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts at the National Gallery of Art (CASVA), and the Newberry Library. She has published widely on Italian art and art patronage of the early sixteenth century, focusing particularly on the patronage of members of the Medici family, and on Raphael and Michelangelo. She has co-edited two books: Beyond Isabella: Secular Women Patrons of Art in Renaissance Italy (2001, with David Wilkins) and The Pontificate of Clement VII: History, Politics, Culture (2005, with Kenneth Gouwens). She is currently preparing a book titled The Making of a Medici Maecenas: Giulio de’ Medici (Pope Clement VII) as Patron of Art.

Lia Markey (MA University of Chicago 2002; PhD University of Chicago 2008) is the Director of the Center for Renaissance Studies at Chicago’s Newberry Library where she is responsible for conferences, symposia, workshops, seminars and digital humanities projects devoted to premodern studies. Dr. Markey’s research examines cross-cultural exchange between Italy and the Americas in the sixteenth and seventeenth century, collecting history, and early modern prints and drawings. Most recently, she has published Imagining the Americas in Medici Florence (Penn State University Press, 2016) and a co-edited volume The New World in Early Modern Italy, 1492-1750 (Cambridge University Press, 2017). Her edited volume, Renaissance Invention: Stradanus’s “Nova Reperta” (Northwestern University Press, forthcoming 2020), will complement the Newberry Library’s spring 2020 exhibition by the same title and include catalogue entries as well as contributions from a related Newberry symposium. Dr. Markey has taught at Northwestern University, the University of Pennsylvania and at Princeton University and held fellowships at the Folger Library, the Warburg Institute, Harvard’s Villa I Tatti, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the Herzog August Bibliothek. She currently participates in the Getty Connecting Art Histories Research Group, “Spanish Italy and the Iberian New World.”

The event is organized by the Italian Cultural Institute of Chicago with the Italian Cultural Institutes in Los Angeles, Montreal, New York, San Francisco, Toronto & Washington D.C on the occasion of the 500th anniversary of Raphael, #Raphael500.

raffaello500 1 







  • Organized by: IIC Chicago
  • In collaboration with: Istituti Italiani di Cultura del Nord America
  • Tag:
  • N