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Seeing Beyond the Word: Visual Arts and the Calvinist Tradition

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Seeing Beyond the Word: Visual Arts and the Calvinist Tradition

It is often assumed that Reformed Christianity has had no bearing on the development of European and New World visual traditions or that the Reformed influence on the visual arts has been purely negative, amounting to an iconoclastic undoing of medieval religious art, especially figural iconography depicting biblical subjects.

These historical studies, complemented by 174 black-and- white photographs and 46 color plates, seek to redefine the discussion of Calvinism's impact on the visual arts through an exploration of Reformed artistic influences in England, France, Switzerland, Germany, Hungary, the Netherlands and America.

Building on studies of Reformed architecture, graphic arts, and the Calvinist reaction to already existing forms of art, the contributors to this volume demonstrate the Reformed tendency toward appropriation, assimilation, adaptation, and reconfiguration, rather than the development of a uniquely Reformed artistic style.
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