By Louise S. Milne.
New Edition, Fully Revised, Publishes: 31 May 2015
Witches and ghosts, dream medicine, women's carnivals, masquerade, monsters, rebel angels, the ship of fools and the dance of death: Carnivals and Dreams explores the extraordinary world of Pieter Bruegel the Elder, Renaissance surrealist, student of folklore and painter of dreams.
In the generation between Rabelais and Shakespeare, the Reformation shook the foundations of the collective imaginary. As the old visual cultures of carnival, dreams and the dead were fragmented and demonised in the minds of Europeans, Bruegel became the first artist to make popular culture the subject of serious art. In his hands, it became an inexhaustible medium through which he could address the new anxieties of his contemporaries.
Louise Milne shows how Bruegel's inventions express the shifting mental landscapes of the sixteenth century, arguing that his art marks nothing less than the genesis of the modern nightmare in art and culture.
This is a book that can be read on many levels, a ground-breaking cultural history of art and the visual imagination, explored in clear lucid prose, through a dazzling range of new sources.
~ Louise S. Milne is a Lecturer at Edinburgh Napier University and Edinburgh College of Art.
Acclaim for Carnivals and Dreams:
"Wonderfully rich and thought-provoking... Essential reading for anyone interested in culture in general and the work of Bruegel in particular." Lynne Holden, Cosmos
"One of the most searching and imaginative studies of Pieter Bruegel's art ever published... Milne takes seriously the idea that art is or can be a kind of continuation of dreaming. Marvellous and long awaited." Christopher Wood, Yale University
Art History/Alternative Histories/Psychology/Visual Anthropology
The original edition, published in February 2008, is now out of print.
New Edition, Fully Revised, Publishes: 31 May 2015, 623 pages, Trade Paperback