Or should we say Jessica’s Laocoon? Following are questions Jessica has culled from the article for Monday’s reading. Blog away!
1)Catterson states that the Laocoön was instantly recognized as the work described in Pliny’s account being “preferable to any other production of the art of painting or of statuary,” even though the sculpture contrasts Pliny’s account (made of 7 pieces instead of 1). Do you think Renaissance audiences were oblivious to this fundamental difference, or were they willing to disregard it for the sake of the discovery?
2)On page 35, Catterson presents a rather provocative theory concerning Michelangelo’s rapid disappearance from Rome only 3 weeks after the discovery. Were you convinced by this, or did you think it was a bit of a stretch?
3)Catterson suggests the difficulties of recognizing forgeries is attributable to the “stylistically anti-personal” nature of the works. In light of this, what do you think the theoretical process was for identifying forgeries during the Italian Renaissance? To what extant did the paranoia for forgeries exist during the period?
4)Hypothetically speaking, what do you think Michelangelo and other Renaissance artists would have gained from engaging with forgery? Was this a serious crime?
5)Overall, did you find Catterson’s argument to be a convincing one, why or why not?