Storia dell’arte n. 158 – Nuova Serie 2 | 2022
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Oltre la biografia: Lione Pascoli, Andrea Bolgi e il marmo di Carrara
Focusing on Lione Pascoli’s biography of Andrea Bolgi, included in the second volume of the Vite de’ pittori, scultori ed architetti moderni (1736), this essay explores how Pascoli broke the conventions of the biographical genre to develop a history of Carrarese sculpture. Such a historiographical endeavour was based on the economic vocation of Carrara, the city of marble, rather than drawing on formal qualities according to the traditional organization of painting schools. Carrara – Pascoli maintained – was naturally destined to inspire the development of marble sculpture. The article demonstrates that Pascoli, by reflecting on the economic specificity of a place, applied key principles of his political economy publications (such as the Testamento Politico, published in 1733) to his historiographical approach on art and, for the first time, articulated a coherent history that culminated with the eighteenth-century practice of sculptors based in Carrara.