Master of Arts (MA)
This research explores Giotto di Bondone's (1266-1337) use of empty and concealed space as a means of implying psychological and spiritual concepts. Focused on his narrative frescoes, this project borrows from art historian Mary Pardo's analysis of the Arena Chapel frescoes as examples of Giotto's ingegno, or visual wit. Giotto conveys the emotional and psychological state of his figures as well as the presence of the divine through spatial and architectural divisions between figure groups and the suggestion of narrative elements outside of the viewers' perspective. Along with close visual analysis, this thesis draws on art historical literature on the fresco cycles of the Bardi and Peruzzi Chapels in Florence and the Basilica of San Francesco in Assisi. Most prior research on Giotto's fresco cycles only tangentially address his use of spatial compositions. Through highlighting the narrative impact of hidden and omitted elements, this research shows that Giotto's particular use of ingegno not only permeates his larger oeuvre beyond Padua, but is so incorporated into his narrative compositions that many of his stylistic imitators can only mimic his visual wit in a superficial manner.
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Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.
Hubbell, Aaron, ""Things Not Seen" in the Frescoes of Giotto: An Analysis of Illusory and Spiritual Depth" (2017). LSU Master's Theses. 4408.