Gary M. Radke, Dean’s Professor of the Humanities at Syracuse University and a fellow of the American Academy in Rome, will present the 2011 J. Bernard Schultz Endowed Lecture in Art History, Thursday (March 3) at West Virginia University’s Creative Arts Center.

The lecture is titled “What Should a Sculpture by Leonardo da Vinci Look Like?” and begins at 5 p.m. in the Bloch learning and Performance Hall (200A). It is free and open to the public.

Painter, inventor, naturalist, anatomist, and so much more, Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519) was renowned in his own day as a remarkable sculptor, too. And yet, in his famous “Treatise on Painting” Leonardo disparaged the art of sculpture as dirty, manual work.

Today, art historians do not agree which, or even if any, of his sculptures survive.

Professor Radke will illustrate how art historians make such determinations and discuss why it is so difficult to recognize Leonardo’s work in sculpture. He will also propose that two previously unrecognized silver figures may have been created by the master.

Radke has received fellowship support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Samuel H. Kress Foundation, ACLS, and the Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation, among others.

His publications include “Viterbo: Profile of a Thirteenth-Century Papal Palace (Cambridge, 1997), with John T. Paoletti “Art in Renaissance Italy,” 3rd edition (London and New York, 2005), “The Gates of Paradise, Lorenzo Ghiberti’s Renaissance Masterpiece,” (Atlanta: High Museum of Art and New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2007) and “Leonardo da Vinci and the Art of Sculpture,” (Atlanta: High Museum of Art and New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2009), as well as numerous articles and book chapters on Italian Renaissance architecture and sculpture.

He is past president of the Italian Art Society, and his work as guest curator for exhibitions of Italian art at the High Museum of Art has been recognized in The New York Times, “Art News,” “Smithsonian Magazine” and other publications.

Radke is also an award-winning teacher, recognized as Meredith Professor for Teaching Excellence and William Wasserstrom Awardee for Excellence in Graduate Teaching.

Every other year, he co-teaches a course on Leonardo da Vinci as artist and engineer with a colleague in civil engineering. His other courses include: Early Renaissance Art, High Renaissance Art and Mannerism, and Michelangelo’s Italy.

The J. Bernard Schultz Lecture Series in Art History was endowed in the College of Creative Arts in 2004 by donors who wish to remain anonymous. The Lecture Series honors current College of Creative Arts Dean Bernie Schultz, who is also professor of art history in the Division of Art and director of the Creative Arts Center.

Each year, the lecture series brings a leading art historian to WVU to enhance the art history program as well as engage the intellectual life of the University.

The J. Bernard Schultz Lecture Series in Art History endowment was created through the WVU Foundation, a private non-profit corporation that generates and provides support for West Virginia University.

For more information about the lecture, contact the WVU College of Creative Arts at (304) 293-4359.


CONTACT: Charlene Lattea, College of Creative Arts
304-293-4841 ext. 3108,

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