Unprecedented in scope like its companion volume on the High Renaissance, “Transformations,” this sixth volume in the Architecture in Context series traces the development of architecture and decoration in the seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries particularly the transformation of rationalist Classical ideals into the emotive, highly theatrical style known as Baroque and the further development away from architectonic principles to the free-ranging decorative style known as Rococo. It begins with an outline of the politics of Absolutism and its opposite over the century from the Thirty Years War to the War of the Austrian Succession: this is illustrated with images largely chosen from the major artists of the day; a supplementary introduction outlines the cross-currents of painting in the early Baroque era. The first substantive section deals with the seminal masters active in Rome Maderno, Cortona, Borromini and Bernini and their contemporaries there, in Venice and in Piedmont. The second section deals with the seminal French masters above all Francois Mansart, Louis Le Vau, Andre Le Notre, Jules-Hardouin Mansart and the latter s followers who developed the Rococo style in the domestic field. The rest of the book is divided into three large sections: the Protestant North the Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden and Britain; the Divided Centre the Catholic powers of central Europe and southern Germany, the Protestants of northern Germany and the Orthodox Russians; the Catholic South the Iberian kingdoms and their dominions in southern Italy and the Americas.”
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