Aufsatz

Silent Poetry: The Disputation on the Immaculate Conception by Carlo Maratti, Revisited

Stefano Colombo

Online veröffentlicht:

16 Jun 2022

Zusammenfassung

Abstract

This paper re-examines the Disputation on the Immaculate Conception by Carlo Maratti (1686) and its reception in hitherto understudied poems which were first published in 1686 and 1687. Although the poems are chiefly celebratory and refer to the tradition of encomiastic pictorial description, this essay demonstrates how they help us understand the beholder’s engagement with Baroque art. It first analyzes the poems as both encomiastic speech and ekphrastic poetry to explain how epideictic description persuasively moves readers to venerate the Virgin, thus rekindling the cult of the Immaculate Conception. Subsequently, a comparative reading of the poems and the painting demonstrates how art and literature mutually informed each other to create new aesthetic and intellectual values. A detailed comparison between visual and verbal languages will therefore offer a new interpretative framework to reassess the painting, the poems, and their public.

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