Focusing on the Mozarabic Chapel and Chapter Room of Toledo Cathedral and their decorative schemes, Erika Dolphin analyzes the patronage of Archbishop Francisco Jimenez de Cisneros (r. 1495-1517), Primate of Spain, who commissioned the rooms and their furnishings during the first decades of the sixteenth century. Along the way she offers a fresh perspective on the work of fresco painter Juan de BorgoA+/-a and that of the long overlooked Luis de Medina, who painted the anteroom of the Chapter Room. Dolphin reveals how the distinctive style and iconography of the two rooms underscore both Cisneros' program of reform of Toledo Cathedral and the Spanish Church, by directing attention to the importance of his relationship with Renaissance Rome and the power he derived from the Vatican to wield temporal and ecclesiastic power within the Spanish realm and the Toledan See. She also explores Medina's role and offers a new interpretation of BorgoA+/-a's artistic formation which takes into consideration his French heritage and the significance of the vibrant international artistic culture that existed in Toledo. Her analysis depends upon a reexamination of the documentary evidence, only partially published and never examined meticulously. Shedding new light on the complex nature of the Renaissance in Spain, this volume represents a major step forward in understanding the important Spanish contributions to an emerging pan-European visual culture.
Art, Politics and Patronage in Renaissance Castile