Bologna Q15 Museo Inter. e Biblioteca della Musica (ANn 2)
[Bologna, Museo Internazionale e Biblioteca della Musica, Cod. Q15] Bologna Q15: The Making and Remaking of a Musical Manuscript. Introductory Study and Facsimile Edition by Margaret Bent. Volume I: Introductory Study. Volume II: Facsimile.
Ars Nova, Nuova Seria, 2. Lucca, 2008. x cm. 2 vols, 400, 686 pp. This manuscript is the largest international anthology of polyphonic music of the early 15th century. It was compiled in Padua in the early 1420s (stage I) and Vicenza in the early 1430s (stages II-III), all copied by a single scribe. The three illuminations are an unusual luxury for a musical manuscript at this period. It was acquired by Padre Martini in 1757 and is a major treasure of his library in Bologna. About half of its 323 compositions are unique; some others are shared with and complemented by the slightly younger Veneto manuscripts Bologna, Biblioteca Universitaria 2216 and Oxford, Canon. misc. 213. It is the most important source for the works of Zacara and Ciconia and for the early works of Guillaume Du Fay (with 78 works, many of them unica). About 50 composers are represented, including native Italians, and composers from the north who were sought after and made their careers in Italy. It is primarily a collection of mass movements (mostly Glorias and Credos, and a few cycles) and motets. Du Fay's Missa Sancti Jacobi was assembled as a cycle only here, and can now be linked with the humanist circle around the Venetian patrician bishop Pietro Emiliani of Vicenza, in which Q15 was compiled. The 109 motets include compositions in honour of doges, bishops and noblemen. 19 French songs were added at the end of stage I, and 11 laude at stage III. Other late additions are the cycle of 24 hymns (most by Du Fay), 9 Magnificats and 3 sequences. For the first time, the complex codicological history of this manuscript is unravelled and the importance of its many revisions examined. The first compilation was originally much larger; the manuscript now embodies two overlapping, superimposed anthologies. Margaret Bent tells this story in her extensive introductory study, which also includes comprehensive indexes and catalogues. She spells out some of the conclusions to be drawn from the partial destruction of the manuscript by its own creator, a unique and extraordinary testimony to changing taste and contemporary reception. Deluxe limited edition, supplied with slipcase. $1450 [item ]
In the post-WWII era, Abstract Expressionism moved the center of Western art from Paris to New York City. One of the primary influences in the rise of abstraction, the critic Clement Greenberg , had supported de Kooning's early abstract work. Despite Greenberg's advice, the artist, who had begun as a figurative painter, returned to the human form in early 1950 with his Woman series . Although having some references to the traditions of single female figures, the women were portrayed as voracious, distorted, and semi-abstract. According to the artist, he wanted to "create the angry humor of tragedy"; having the frantic look of the atomic age, a world in turmoil, a world in need of comic relief. Later, he said "Maybe ... I was painting the woman in me. Art isn't a wholly masculine occupation, you know. I'm aware that some critics would take this to be an admission of latent homosexuality ... If I painted beautiful women, would that make me a non-homosexual? I like beautiful women. In the flesh—even the models in magazines. Women irritate me sometimes. I painted that irritation in the Woman series. That's all." Such ideas could not be expressed by pure abstraction alone.  Some critics, however, see the Woman series as misogynistic .