The landscapes in Piero's paintings, particularly his Baptism of Christ (The National Gallery, London), are often thought to recall the area around his hometown of Borgo San Sepolcro. In truth, they evoke the upper Tiber Valley without describing it precisely. But what did it mean to locate sacred scenes in a recognizable and local setting? Did that landscape carry any connotations for the fifteenth-century residents of Borgo San Sepolcro that might be lost to us today?
-This lecture is made possible by the Robert H. Smith Family Foundation.
Scott Nethersole read History of Art as a BA and MA student at The Courtauld, where he specialised in Florentine renaissance art. After four years working for the English furniture department at Sotheby's, he returned to The Courtauld to take his PhD, writing his thesis on 'The Representation of Violence in Fifteenth-century Florence'. While writing his doctorate he held the Michael Bromberg Fellowship in the Department of Prints and Drawings in the British Museum. From 2008 to 2010, he was the Harry M Weinrebe Curatorial Assistant at the National Gallery, London, before returning to The Courtauld to take up the post of Lecturer in Italian Renaissance Art in September 2010. He curated the exhibition Devotion by Design: Italian Altarpieces before 1500 at the National Gallery in summer 2011.
Scott Nethersole, lecturer at The Courtauld Institute of Art, analyzes Piero della Francesca's The Baptism of Christ and suggests that the cityscape in the background is actually the painter's birthplace, Borgo San Sepolcro.