Sebastiano del Piombo, Polyphemus, fresco, 1511-12, Rome, Villa Farnesina

I am continuing my writings about sixteenth-century caricature, grotesque (see also here) and what I’d call proto-cartooning with an article in the anthology Grotesque and Caricature: Leonardo to Bernini, ably edited by Rebecca Norris and Lucia Tantardini and just published by Brill. The article, “Sebastiano’s Caricatural Gesture and the Path to Idealism”, focuses on Sebastiano del Piombo who never actively pursued the grotesque or even the broadly caricatural, but nevertheless incorporate a certain caricatural simplification, even abstraction, in his art that among other things strengthened the spiritual message of his art.

The book has plenty of fascinating articles on the subject of early modern caricature and grotesque. Well worth seeking out for people interested in the subject.

Rebecca Norris and Lucia Tantardini, eds., Grotesque and Caricature – Leonardo to Bernini, Leiden: Brill, 2024, pp. 55-78. Find it at your local art library. See more here.