Revealing Ravenna: Why the Best of Byzantium in is Italy
By Dr Richard Stemp
Thursday 7th January 2021 6pm

The Byzantine Empire lasted from the fall of Rome in the fifth century, until the fall of Constantinople in the fifteenth, a millennium of unparalleled artistic creativity of which numerous examples survive, but even more has been lost. For a variety of complex of reasons the best surviving images from this time are not to be found in modern-day Turkey, but in Italy. They are the marvellous mosaics of Ravenna. Created in the 5th and 6th Centuries, they are witnesses to three different systems of government, to conflicting beliefs within Christianity, and to the egos and self-glorification of the various rulers and patrons. Whatever they might show or mean, they are also among the most sumptuous, dazzling, and colourful images ever produced.


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