Patronage and Dynasty: The Rise of the Della Rovere in Renaissance Italy
This collection of essays offers a thorough study of the patron-artist relationship through the lens of one of early modern Italy's most powerful and influential historical families. Contributors present a longitudinal study of the della Rovere family's ascent into Italian nobility. The della Rovere was a family of popes, cardinals, and powerful dukes who financed some of the world's best-known and greatest artwork. The essays explore the issue of identity and its maintenance, of carving a permanent spot for a family name in a rapidly changing atmosphere.†
††††††††† Although these studies depart from art patronage, they uncover how the popes, cardinals, dukes, and signore of the della Rovere family constituted their identity. Originally a nouveau-riche creation of papal nepotism, the della Rovere first populated the ranks of cardinals under the powerful popes Sixtus IV and Julius II. Within the framework of later papal relations, the family negotiated its position within the economy of Italian nobles.