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Stefano Colombo

Research project: "The Rhetoric of Celebration in Seventeenth-Century Venetian Sepulchral Monuments"

Supervisor: Dr Lorenzo Pericolo

I am an AHRC-funded doctoral student in History of Art at the University of Warwick researching the concept of sovereignty in Venice and its influence on the Republic's early modern celebratory rhetoric. I completed my MA (laurea magistrale) in history of art at Università Ca' Foscari, Venice, with a thesis focused on the commemorative paintings of doges at the Doge's Palace, Venice.


My doctoral research investigates the execution and reception of seventeenth-century Venetian tomb monuments of prominent patrician families in relation to the self-celebratory imagery of Venice. Taking an interdisciplinary approach, this projects aims to analyze these monuments as rhetorical devices apt to celebrate Venice and instil subtle forms of Republican propaganda: not only were they intended to commemorate the defunct, but they were perceived as living presences and their agency was supposed to elicit the involvement of the viewer and to gain his or her persuasion. In particular, my analysis is focused on:

  • sepulchral monuments of Venetian patricians executed in the time of the architect Baldassarre Longhena (1596/97-1682)
  • commemorative monuments of Venetian "cittadini"
  • sepulchral monuments of sixteenth-century doges

Research interests

  • painting, sculpture and architecture in Venice, 1400-1700
  • idea of empire and sovereignty in early modern Europe
  • ekphrasis and visual rhetoric in the Italian Renaissance and Baroque


  • The Commemorative Monument to Doge Leonardo Loredan in Santi Giovanni e Paolo: Rethinking the Funerary memory in Early Seventeenth-Century Venice, “Mausolus”, Summer 2016, pp. 23-29.
  • Portraits of Sovereignty: Jacopo Palma Giovane and the Doges' Commemorative Cycle in the Doge's Palace, Venice, "Artibus et Historiae", forthcoming.
  • "Bellum geritur ut pax acquiratur". La celebrazione di Venezia nei dipinti di battaglie nelle sale del Maggior Consiglio e dello Scrutinio a Palazzo Ducale, in Maclodio e la sua battaglia. Immagini e divagazioni, eds Giuseppe Fusari and Elena Frosio (Brescia: Roccafranca, 2012).



Stefano Colombo

S dot Colombo at warwick dot ac dot uk