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Artstor's Curriculum Guides

Images for Teaching are sets of images aligning with broad themes in a series of courses, from Shakespeare to Data Visualization.

Overview

Shakespeare: Text and Performance focuses on three plays, Romeo and Juliet, Twelfth Night, and Cymbeline. The reading list covers three genres (tragedy, comedy, romance) and leads from very familiar to less familiar works by Shakespeare. The images are used to build out Shakespeare’s world and the worlds depicted in the plays; to explore themes from mythology and literature drawn on in these plays; to provide insight into subsequent stage history; and to inspire students’ own scenographic imaginations. 

Julia Reinhard Lupton, Department of English, University of California, Irvine

Shakespeare and Renaissance Performance Spaces

This section uses images to explore the architecture of the Globe; other performance spaces and practices of the period; the mythos of Elizabeth I; and the layered, image- and affect-rich character of the Renaissance calendar.

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Romeo & Juliet: Verona and the Renaissance City

Images are used to establish Verona as a locale in northern Italy. Introduce the classical source of the play, the story of Pyramus and Thisbe, through Renaissance art, especially home décor (plates, boxes, cassoni). Also highlighted are some of the staging choices made by eighteenth, nineteenth, and twentieth century directors and designers.

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Romeo & Juliet: Pyramus & Thisbe, a Classical Source with a Medieval Afterlife

Images are used to establish Verona as a locale in northern Italy. Introduce the classical source of the play, the story of Pyramus and Thisbe, through Renaissance art, especially home décor (plates, boxes, cassoni). Also highlighted are some of the staging choices made by eighteenth, nineteenth, and twentieth-century directors and designers.

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Romeo & Juliet: Staging Romeo & Juliet

Images are used to establish Verona as a locale in northern Italy. Introduce the classical source of the play, the story of Pyramus and Thisbe, through Renaissance art, especially home décor (plates, boxes, cassoni). Also highlighted are some of the staging choices made by eighteenth, nineteenth, and twentieth century directors and designers.

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Romeo and Juliet in Love

Use images to illustrate a number of themes and features in Romeo and Juliet, including Shakespeare’s pharmacy/plant world; the Franciscans; Petrarchism and love imagery; and nurses and procuresses.

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Twelfth Night: Themes and Variations - Christmas Revels

Twelfth Night features several key themes, including ships and shipwrecks and music. The title refers to Christmas revels. View Jan Steen’s Depiction of 12th Night Christmas celebration--to what milieu in Shakepeare’s play does it most resemble? Cakes and ale associated with 12th night revels are shown in Jean Baptiste-Greuze’s Twelth Night Cake. What is mood here?

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Twelfth Night: Themes and Variations - Renaissance Ships & Ship Wrecks

Twelfth Night features several key themes, including ships and shipwrecks and music. Discuss wise fools, knavish fools, and the foolish fools in Twelfth Night.

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Twelfth Night: Themes and Variations - If Music be the Food of Love...

Twelfth Night features several key themes, including ships and shipwrecks and music. In Caravaggio's The Musicians, how does the artist appeal to the senses? What qualities and affects are associated with music? Compare the mood and message of Vermeer's A Young Woman Standing at a Virginal to Caravaggio's work, and match with scenes in Twelfth Night.

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Cymbeline: The Bedroom in Cymbeline

In the most famous scene of this play, the chaste wife Innogen is voyeuristically spied upon by the machinating Iachimo, who hides in a trunk in order to enter her room. He reports back incriminating details to her husband Posthumus, listing all of her furnishings as well as a mole on her breast. These material signs convince her husband of her infidelity. This image gallery attempts to reconstruct what her bedroom and its furnishings might have looked like. Explore the stories depicted on her luxury furnishings, including Antony and Cleopatra, Lucretia and Tarquin, and Diana and Actaeon. In a second lecture, look at Renaissance interiors in paintings from Annunciations to genre scenes, as well as aristocratic women as designers and curators of interior space (Isabella d’Este and Bess of Hardwick).

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Cymbeline: Picturing Interiors in Renaissance Art

Annunciation scenes, in which the Angel Gabriel appears to Mary and announces her pregnancy, sometimes take place in the Virgin’s bedroom. Sometimes she is depicted reading a prophetic passage. Do you see Annunciation references in Cymbeline? Who is the “angel” (messenger)?Urs Graf's Soldier of Fortune in bed chamber of a courtesan is the kind of scene that Iachimo pictures to Innogen when he reports her husband’s affairs.

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