This study brings together leading scholars from Europe and the United States to consider the art of Hans Holbein the Younger (1497/98-1543) from a variety of perspectives and disciplines. Generously illustrated and based on the most up-to-date research, the book is essential reading for anyone with an interest in Holbein the Younger and his magnificent art.
In chapters relating to artistic exchange, the contributors discuss what Holbein knew of French and Italian art and how he utilized this knowledge. Conservation and technical chapters examine the materials and techniques in the painting The Ambassadors and documentary evidence on a series of festival paintings on canvas. Two contributors examine the artist's woodcuts, particularly Dance of Death, in the light of contemporary political and theological issues. In addition, the historical and theoretical circumstances and contexts of Holbein's portraits are investigated, notably their associations with classical antiquity and its revival in humanist thought. The book also considers the impact of the first scholarly monograph on Holbein's reception and how German Romantic literary art criticism of the early nineteenth century shaped an image of his life and art.
The late Mark Roskill was professor of art history at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. John Oliver Hand is curator of Northern Renaissance painting at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.