Presentation Details

The Second International Conference on New Directions in the Humanities

Accademia Della Crusca: Arte e Impese

Prof. Liana Cheney.

The presentation will analyze the style and iconography in some of the imprese used by the members of the Accademia della Crusca in their pale to symbolize the aims and endeavors of this learned Italian institution as well as reflecting the artistic influence in their design. The cultural pursuit of the Academy, for example, parallels with the agricultural cultivation and tasks of a farmer or a baker. The filtering action of the Academy grammarian is compared to the farmer usage of the bolter in sieving the flour (farina) from the bran (crusca). This symbolic parallelism is further associated with a baker’s labor and agrarian instruments, a sculptor’s creative process and technical skill, and a Crusca grammarian’s task and word practice. In these two imprese, L’Informe and Avventuroso, Salviati and Buonarroti use the “proper” Italian word or lexicon to refer to artistic aims, honoring the visual assimilation and collection of ancient art as well as artistic undertakings, such as casting bronze. Artistic techniques and practices visualize the practical application of the language.


Prof. Liana Cheney  (United States)
Professor of Art History and Chair
Department of Cultural Studies,
UMASS Lowell

Professor of Art History, specialist in Mannerist iconography and Neoplatonism in the 16th Century. Published books on Botticelli, Giorgio Vasari and Edward Burne-Jones as well as in women's art, e.g., Self-Portraits by Women Painters.

  • Iconography and interpretation

(30 min. Conference Paper, English)