Combined Academic Publishers

The Monster in the Garden

9780812247558: Hardback
Release Date: 1st October 2015

48 illus.

Dimensions: 152 x 229

Number of Pages: 256

Series Penn Studies in Landscape Architecture

University of Pennsylvania Press, Inc.

The Monster in the Garden

The Grotesque and the Gigantic in Renaissance Landscape Design

In The Monster in the Garden, Luke Morgan develops a new conceptual model of Renaissance landscape design, arguing that the monster was a key figure in Renaissance culture and that the incorporation of the monstrous into gardens was not incidental but an essential feature.

Hardback / £50.00

Monsters, grotesque creatures, and giants were frequently depicted in Italian Renaissance landscape design, yet they have rarely been studied. Their ubiquity indicates that gardens of the period conveyed darker, more disturbing themes than has been acknowledged.

In The Monster in the Garden, Luke Morgan argues that the monster is a key figure in Renaissance culture. Monsters were ciphers for contemporary anxieties about normative social life and identity. Drawing on sixteenth-century medical, legal, and scientific texts, as well as recent scholarship on monstrosity, abnormality, and difference in early modern Europe, he considers the garden within a broader framework of inquiry. Developing a new conceptual model of Renaissance landscape design, Morgan argues that the presence of monsters was not incidental but an essential feature of the experience of gardens.

Introduction: Reframing the Renaissance Garden
Chapter 1. The Legibility of Landscape: From Fascism to Foucault
Chapter 2. The Grotesque and the Monstrous
Chapter 3. A Monstruary: The Excessive, the Deficient, and the Hybrid
Chapter 4. "Rare and Enormous Bones of Huge Animals": The Colossal Mode
Chapter 5. "Pietra Morta, in Pietra Viva": The Sacro Bosco
Conclusion: Toward the Sublime

Notes
Bibliography
Index
Acknowledgments

Luke Morgan is Senior Lecturer in Art History and Theory at Monash University. He is author of Nature as Model: Salomon de Caus and Early Seventeenth-Century Landscape Design.