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Bos variis animalculis infarcitus / Hogenberg and Bruining
 
In European cities and courts, elaborate spectacles were staged to commemorate historic events, sacred feasts, and popular holidays. Royal birthdays, marriages, coronations, funerals, military triumphs, civic dates, and religious holidays were occasions for wealthy patrons to commission important, but temporary, works of art. Produced from ephemeral materials, these festival arts and decorations were significant projects in their time—as important as the surviving architecture and monuments in cities, or the paintings and sculptures now in museums. Although the original works do not survive, the art of festivals can be studied in works on paper created to describe and publicize these events. The Getty Research Institute's festival collections range from Renaissance prints and illustrated books to 20th-century photographs of Spanish festivals by the photographer Cristina Garcia Rodero.