Pisano, Giovanni

born с 1250, Pisa
died after 1314, Siena?

Italian sculptor and architect.

His early work is similar to that of Nicola Pisano, his father and teacher. About 1285 he began work on the facade of Siena's cathedral, whose lavish and ordered design and ornamentation became the model for future Gothic facade decoration in central Italy. His other great achievement, the Pistoia pulpit (с 1298–1301), is characterized by extreme agitation, its figures, animals, drapery, and landscape being wrenched into physically impossible configurations. His pulpit for the Pisa cathedral (1302–10) is much more Classical, perhaps to accord with Giotto's monumental style, then in the ascendancy. Though regarded as Italy's only true Gothic sculptor, he never lost sight of the heritage of Classical Rome.

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▪ Italian sculptor
born c. 1250, , Pisa
died after 1314, , Siena?
 sculptor, sometimes called the only true Gothic sculptor in Italy. He began his career under the classicist influence of his father, Nicola, and carried on this tradition after his father's death, continuously reintegrating the antique style into more northerly and contemporary Gothic forms.

      Pisano began his career in his father Nicola Pisano's workshop and so thoroughly assimilated the ideas he found there that his early work is difficult to distinguish from that of his father. It was in the contract (1265) for the pulpit in the Siena cathedral that Pisano is first specifically mentioned as an assistant to his father. Since he was at that time not referred to as “magister,” or independent master craftsman, Pisano must still have been in his teens. At any rate, by September 1285 he had rejected his Pisan citizenship and had become a resident of Siena. Around this time he began his work on the design and sculptural ornamentation of the facade for the cathedral of Siena which became, in its lavishness and ordering, the model for virtually all future Gothic facade decoration in central Italy. Unlike French examples, in which figural ornament pulsates over the entire facade, Pisano's designs for the Siena facade offer a much more architectural approach to the problem. The lower story is simply decorated with colonnettes (small columns) and a restrained foliate pattern, which follows the vertical movement of the colonnettes. Aside from the carved lintels over the doors, figural sculpture begins at the level of the arches over the entrances with slightly larger than life-size figures of prophets and sibyls and continues throughout the rest of the facade. Although each figure inhabits a discrete niche, agitated, forward-bending poses cause them to converse across the vast space of the facade and soften the otherwise clearly stated architectonic lines that order the structure. Recent research has emphasized particularly close relationships in design between the sculpture of the Siena facade and French foliate patterns and figural reliefs, especially from the cathedral at Auxerre. Since there are no known documentary references to Giovanni Pisano between 1268 and 1278, the possibility of a trip through France during these years seems extremely likely.

      Next to the Siena cathedral facade, Pisano's pulpit in Pistoia, completed in 1301, is his greatest achievement. The five narrative reliefs of this pulpit roughly parallel the subject matter of his father Nicola's Pisa pulpit 40 years earlier, as does the overall architectural format, but the style pushes the expressive qualities innate in Nicola's Pisa pulpit to a new level of intensity. In the “Annunciation,” the “Nativity,” and the “Annunciation to the Shepherds,” the extreme agitation that characterizes all the reliefs for the Pistoia pulpit pulsates throughout the panel. Figures, animals, drapery, and landscape features are wrenched into physically impossible configurations; light shatters over the broken surfaces and deeply cut relief; and each figure responds convulsively to the individual situations in which he acts as a participant. What is critical to the change in style from the first Pisa pulpit reliefs to the Pistoia reliefs is a preference for an overall agitated and deeply cut surface as opposed to the earlier more massive and monumental organization of forms.

      Pisano never repeated the frenzy of forms that covers the Pistoia pulpit. Instead he returned to the more stately, classical spirit that had been at the heart of his father's earliest work. The reasons for this cannot be documented, but they most likely stem in part from Giovanni's experience with Giotto's monumental and heroic style which was already in the ascendancy by the time that the Pistoia pulpit was completed. Pisano, in fact, carved a marble Madonna and Child for the Arena Chapel in Padua at approximately the same time that Giotto painted his profoundly moving fresco cycle there (c. 1305). In addition, the quasi-imperial political movements established by Pope Boniface VIII at the turn of the 14th century may also have prompted him to return to more overtly classical quotations.

      From 1302 to 1310 Pisano again worked in Pisa, this time for a pulpit for the cathedral. In this pulpit, now badly reconstructed after having been disassembled, the relief style is considerably more docile than that of the Pistoia reliefs. His last recorded work was a tomb sculpture for Margaret of Luxembourg in Genoa in 1311 (fragments now in the Palazzo Bianco). He was last recorded in Siena in 1314, and it is presumed that he died shortly thereafter. If, as is clear from his work in Siena, Pisano was Italy's only Gothic sculptor, it is also true that he never lost sight of the heritage of classical Rome that underlies all of the artistic thinking of central Italy.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Pisano, Giovanni — (c. 1248 after 1314)    Italian sculptor and architect, son of Nicola Pisano. As noted in inscriptions that accompany his works, Giovanni was born in Pisa. He is mentioned in 1265 in the documentation relating to his father s commission for the… …   Dictionary of Renaissance art

  • Pisano, Giovanni — ► (¿1245 1314?) Escultor y arquitecto italiano, hijo de Nicola Pisano. Son obras suyas las esculturas de la fachada de las catedral de Siena y la catedral de Pisa, entre otras. * * * ( 1250, Pisa–después de 1314, ¿Siena?). Escultor y arquitecto… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • GIOVANNI PISANO — (av. 1250 apr. 1314) Né à Pise, Giovanni Pisano fut associé très jeune aux entreprises de son père Nicola Pisano, puisque dès 1265 il figure dans le contrat passé entre celui ci et l’Opera del Duomo de Sienne pour l’exécution de la célèbre chaire …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Pisano — pisano, a (del lat. «Pisānus») adj. y, aplicado a personas, también n. De Pisa, ciudad de Italia. * * * pisano, na. (Del lat. Pisānus). adj. Natural de Pisa. U. t. c. s. || 2. Perteneciente o relativo a esta ciudad de Italia. * * * Pisano,… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Pisano — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Pisano puede referirse a: Lo relativo a la ciudad italiana de Pisa La familia de escultores del gótico italiano: Nicola Pisano Andrea Pisano Giovanni Pisano Otros personajes: Giunta Pisano Bernardo Pisano Nino Pisano …   Wikipedia Español

  • Giovanni Pisano — Fachada de la catedral de Siena, Italia. Giovanni Pisano (h. 1250 1314) fue un escultor italiano, pintor y arquitecto. Hijo del famoso escultor Nicola Pisano, quién recibió su formación en el taller de su padre. En 1265 1268 trabajó con su padre… …   Wikipedia Español

  • Pisano — /pee zah naw/, n. 1. Andrea /ahn drdde ah/, c1270 c1348, Italian sculptor. 2. Giovanni /jaw vahn nee/, c1245 c1320, and his father, Nicola /nee kaw lah/, c1220 78, Italian sculptors and architects. * * * (as used in expressions) Pisano Andrea… …   Universalium

  • Giovanni — (as used in expressions) Giovanni Antonio Canal Giovanni da Bologna Tommaso Di Giovanni Di Simone Guidi Stefano di Giovanni Albinoni Tomaso Giovanni Boccaccio Giovanni Enrico Giuseppe Giovanni Boito Bononcini Giovanni Giovanni Caboto Casanova… …   Universalium

  • Giovanni — (as used in expressions) Albinoni, Tomaso (Giovanni) Boccaccio, Giovanni Enrico Giuseppe Giovanni Boito Bononcini, Giovanni Caboto, Giovanni Giovanni Antonio Canal Casanova, Giovanni Giacomo Giovanni Coralli Peracini Gabrieli, Andrea y Giovanni… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Giovanni Pisano — (c. 1250 – c. 1315) was an Italian sculptor, painter and architect. Son of the famous sculptor Nicola Pisano, he received his training in the workshop of his father.In 1265 1268 he worked with his father at the pulpit in the Siena cathedral. The… …   Wikipedia

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