Italian art historian, architect, and painter. He is best known for Le vite de' più eccelenti architetti, pittori, et sculteri italiani/The Lives of the Most Excellent Italian Architects, Painters, and Sculptors (1550; enlarged 1568), which provides an invaluable source of information on Italian Renaissance artists. His most important architectural work was the Uffizi Palace, Florence (now an art gallery).
During his lifetime he was famous as a painter and architect, his Mannerist style showing the strong influence of Michelangelo. As well as the Uffizi, he designed the Palazzo Vecchio, Florence, and its frescoes 1555. His painting can also be studied in his own house in Arezzo 1547, which he decorated lavishly (it is now a museum). He also designed palaces and churches in Pisa and Arezzo. As a painter he has never been highly rated, though he is of interest as an example of the Mannerist exaggeration which the devotion to Michelangelo produced.
His Lives, however, is a classic, and, though corrected in a number of particulars by modern research, remains of the greatest value as an account of the progress of Italian art from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance. It was partly rewritten and enlarged 1568, and contains his autobiography.
Vasari was born in Arezzo. He studied art in Florence for a short while with Michelangelo, for whom he had an unbounded admiration, and also with Andrea del Sarto and Baccio Bandinelli. He studied the work of Raphael in Rome.
We're sorry this article wasn't helpful. Tell us how we can improve.