Skip Main Navigation
Page Content

Save This Event

Event Saved


Italian Cultural Institute of Chicago

Tuesday, September 18, 2018 from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM (CDT)


Ticket Information

Type End Quantity
X-RATED RAPHAEL   more info Not Started Free  


Event Details


A lecture by Professor Judith Testa

The romantic and erotic tale of the painter Raphael and his mysterious Roman mistress--known to posterity as “La Fornarina,” The Baker’s Daughter-- is one of the most intriguing stories to come down to us from the Italian Renaissance. First related by Giorgio Vasari in his “Lives of the Artists,” this is a story that involves love, lust and art, a combination that made it irresistible to Pablo Picasso. In 1967, at the astonishing age of 87, Picasso produced a suite of 25 etchings in which he imagined-- and expressed in rapturously sexual terms-- the love affair of Raphael and La Fornarina.


This talk will first recount the legend of "La Fornarina" and consider the painting by Raphael of a beautiful nude woman identified as her portrait. With the story and the painting in mind, the talk will present Picasso’s etchings-- works so powerful and explicit in their sexual imagery that they have never been allowed to be exhibited in the United States.


Judith Testa was born and grew up in New York. She came to Chicago to attend graduate school at the University of Chicago, where she received MA and PhD degrees in Renaissance Art History. Before her retirement, she taught history of art at Northern Illinois University. While on the faculty of the NIU School of Art, she received the Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching award four times, and she was also awarded a Presidential

Teaching Professorship. Since retiring, she spends several months of each year in Rome, the place she calls "the city of my soul." She writes book reviews, travel and history articles for Fra Noi, the monthly magazine of the greater Chicago area Italian American community. In addition to many scholarly publications, she is the author of three books for the general reader: Rome Is Love Spelled Backward (Roma Amor)— essays about Rome’s major monuments and personalities; Sal Maglie. Baseball's Demon Barber, the biography of a 1950‘s New York baseball star of Italian American background; and most recently, An Art Lover's Guide to Florence.


Free and open to the public.

Have questions about X-RATED RAPHAEL-PICASSO EXPLORES A RENAISSANCE LOVE AFFAIR? Contact Italian Cultural Institute of Chicago

Save This Event

Event Saved

When & Where

Italian Cultural Institute
500 N Michigan Ave
Suite 1450
Chicago, IL

Tuesday, September 18, 2018 from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM (CDT)

  Add to my calendar


Italian Cultural Institute of Chicago

Italian Cultural Institute of Chicago

500 N Michigan Ave., Suite 1450

Chicago, IL 60611


Currently active in all the major cities of the five continents, the ninety Italian Cultural Institutes serve as an ideal meeting place for intellectuals, artists, and cultural operatives, as well as for ordinary citizens, both Italian and foreign, who wish to establish or maintain a relationship with our country. By acting not only as a showcase and source of current information on Italy, but also as a driving force behind initiatives and projects of cultural cooperation, the Italian Cultural Institute has become a focal point for both the Italian communities abroad and the growing demand for Italian culture throughout the world.

By extending the role of Embassies and Consulates, the Italian Cultural Institutes offer the most effective tools for promoting a worldwide image of Italy as a center of production, preservation, and dissemination of culture from the Classical Age until today. Along with organizing cultural events in a vast array of areas, including art, music, cinema, theatre, dance, fashion, design, and photography, the Italian Cultural Institutes:

  • Offer the opportunity to learn Italian language and culture through the organization of courses, the management of libraries and the preparation of educational and editorial materials;
  • Provide the networks and the premises to facilitate the integration of Italian operators in the process of cultural exchange and production at an international level;
  • Provide information and logistic support to public and private cultural operators, both Italian and foreign;
  • Continuously support initiatives aimed at promoting an intercultural dialogue based on the principles of democracy and international solidarity.
  Contact the Organizer

Interested in hosting your own event?

Join millions of people on Eventbrite.

Please log in or sign up

In order to purchase these tickets in installments, you'll need an Eventbrite account. Log in or sign up for a free account to continue.