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L'Art de la Reverie. Female daydreams in Nineteenth Century painting

Nicosia, Marta Chiara (2015) L'Art de la Reverie. Female daydreams in Nineteenth Century painting. Advisor: Bertelli, Dott. Linda. Coadvisor: Venturi, Prof. Riccardo . pp. 400. [IMT PhD Thesis]

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Abstract

The focus of this research is analysing forms and meanings of dream representations in the visual arts of the nineteenth century. The research has compiled an extensive collection of dreams representations or dream-related images, primarily in painting. Such a heterogeneous collection has allowed to remark how during the nineteenth century the iconographic categories of dream images which were previously to be found are almost not existing anymore. On the contrary, the emergence of a new category has been observed: a new form of dream representation is now the daydream, best defined by the originally French term ‘reverie’ for reasons of linguistic accuracy. The thesis, therefore, aims at defining this type of representation in its essential and recurring features, and at questioning its diffusion and meaning. These answers are based on observations of common factors found within this new iconography; predominantly, the fact that the main actors of these represented reveries are almost exclusively women. To illustrate how this new iconographic category varies during the century and who the artists contributing to its definition are, several artworks have been considered and analysed from an iconographic and stylistic perspective. This artworks analysis has led to the conclusion that the reverie in this century is understood as a primarily feminine activity, and as such it depends on both the societal role concretely attributed to the woman, and on the abstract view of the woman, whether it be idealising or degrading, in the different fields of knowledge, from medicine and psychology to art and literature. Additionally, the thesis intends to illustrate the other possible forms of reveries when they are not images of femininity. In conclusion the reverie, and above all its representation, will be identified as a specific phenomenon invested with several theoretical and socio-cultural implications, above all concerning the common understanding of femininity. Being symptomatic of the nineteenth century’s mentality, this conception of the reverie, as well as its visual representations, will have a different evolution already from the first decades of the following century.

Item Type: IMT PhD Thesis
Subjects: N Fine Arts > NX Arts in general
PhD Course: Management and Development of Cultural Heritage
Identification Number: 10.6092/imtlucca/e-theses/180
Date Deposited: 02 Mar 2016 09:21
URI: http://e-theses.imtlucca.it/id/eprint/180

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