„Tanto lontano da ogni virtù“

Zu Konkurrenz, Neid und falscher Freundschaft in Vasaris Vita des Andrea del Castagno und Domenico Veneziano

  • Jana Graul (Autor/in)


This essay traces the conceptualization of envy in Giorgio Vasari’s Lives. On the basis of a detailed analysis of Andrea del Castagno’s and Domenico Veneziano’s Vita, this case study reveals the categorical dependence of envy on friendship, on artistic competition and virtù, but also on giudizio, key term to contemporary art-theory. It thereby uncovers the conceptual relevance of envy within the Lives, in both its didactic and art-theoretical dimension. As will be shown, the character of Andrea del Castagno combines artistic talent with an addiction to envy – two traits that, for Vasari, are in principal mutually exclusive.  Castagno’s biography—within the Lives’ framework exemplary for its artistic content, yet reprehensible in moral matters—proves that the deadly sin of envy discredits and defeats artistic excellence.