Calendar Search
Event Calendar

Visit Home Event Calendar Event Information

True vs. Colored Sculpture: A Nineteenth-Century Debate about the Renaissance (lecture)

Date: Saturday, June 14, 2008
Time: 3:00 p.m.
Location: Getty Villa, Auditorium
Admission: Free; a ticket is required.

Even though color was used extensively in sculpture from antiquity through the Renaissance, its use was one of the most contentious issues addressed by artists and art historians during the 19th century. The leading art historian of this time, Jakob Burckhardt, despised color in sculpture and the excessive realism he thought it created. "True" sculpture, he argued, was colorless, and his rejection of color in sculpture proved to be at odds with newer trends in scholarship and taste of the time.

Art historian Bruce Boucher explores this debate and further explains Burckhardt's antipathy towards polychromed sculpture. The lecture complements the current exhibition The Color of Life: Polychromy in Sculpture from Antiquity to the Present (on view through June 23 at the Getty Villa), which explores the uses of color in figural sculpture over the course of four millennia.

About Bruce Boucher
Bruce Boucher is curator of European sculpture at the Art Institute of Chicago. He has studied at Harvard, Oxford, and the Courtauld Institute of Art, and was for many years a professor of art history at University College in the University of London. He has held fellowships at Villa I Tatti, the University of Bonn, and the Technical University of Berlin, and was a guest scholar at the J. Paul Getty Museum in 1993 and a visiting member of the Research Department of the Victoria and Albert Museum in 2000–2. Boucher has published a number of books and articles about sculpture and architecture, including The Sculpture of Jacopo Sansovino (1991), Andrea Palladio, the Architect in His Time (1994), Italian Baroque Sculpture (1998), and Earth and Fire, Italian Terracotta Sculpture from Donatello to Canova (2001).

How to Get Here
The Getty Villa is located at 17985 Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu, California, approximately 25 miles west of downtown Los Angeles. See Hours, Directions, Parking for directions and parking information.

Ecce Homo

Event Information by E-Mail
Be the first to know about upcoming lectures, concerts, and exhibitions by signing up for our free e-newsletters. Learn more and sign up now.