Laura / Aura. Tête-à-tête with a Renaissance Bust
Lecture by Jeanette Kohl at Freie Universität Berlin, April 25, 2023.
The lecture is dedicated to an attempt at a “phenomenology” of female bust portraits of the Quattrocento. The focus is on the enigmatic bust of an unknown woman by Francesco Laurana in the Viennese Kunstkammer, which is characterized by its unusual polychrome. In the context of a comparative object analysis and against the cultural-historical background of a Petrarchan topic, the question of how this and other female busts ‘communicate’ with the viewer and what significance their fragmentary object character has will be pursued. Although not primarily motivated by the art-historical “passion for identifying” (Didi-Huberman), the considerations ultimately lead to a proposed new identification.