Six Essays on a Monumental Venetian Painting Series Celebrating the 1468 Wedding of Caterina Corner with the King of Cyprus

Five monumental spalliere are identified as commissioned in celebration of the Venetian wedding of Caterina Corner and the King of Cyprus in 1468, a wedding that would have enormous implications for Caterina, the Corner family, but also for Venetian territorial aspirations. In fact, this is the only known monumental commission for a Venetian domestic palace from the 1400s. The Walters Art Museum’s series on the Abduction of Helen, central to this commission, is the focus of six essays gathered in the Journal of the Walters Art Museum (74, 2019, now open source), led off by that of Joaneath Spicer proposing the new interpretation, attribution to Dario di Giovanni (described by Vasari as a rival of the young Andrea Mantegna in Padua), and the surprising relationship of the paintings to theatricals performed as part of Venetian weddings. Other essays present discoveries on the challenges of becoming a blond and the techniques introduced in creating paintings for such an extraordinary wedding.

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