Dr. Janetta Rebold Benton is back by popular demand for her second season of lectures at the Schimmel after 30 years at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Italy, where many of the world's greatest masterpieces have been created, has long exerted a disproportionately large influence on the history of art. Dr. Benton's lectures, focus on the highlights of architecture, sculpture, painting, and mosaic in Italy from antiquity through the Middle Ages, the Renaissance, and the Baroque eras. Time travel through Italy's artistic past, stopping at the world's most magnificent monuments, temples, cathedrals, and palaces. Study sculpted figures, some appearing to be almost alive. Examine glittering mosaics, murals, and ceiling paintings that will trick your eyes. February 27 - Antiquity: Early Italy and the Etruscans: Life in the afterlife. Rise of the Roman Empire: extraordinary engineering--the Colosseum and the Pantheon; documentary sculpture: portraiture--meet the Roman emperors; arches and columns; the "Four Styles" of wall painting. March 6 - Middle Ages: Rectangular Old Saint Peter's and circular Santa Costanza in Rome; polygonal San Vitale in Ravenna; "Leaning Tower" of Pisa; mosaics of San Marco in Venice; Palazzo Vecchio in Florence; Palazzo Ducale in Venice; the delicately detailed paintings of Duccio of Siena and the innovative paintings Giotto of Florence. March 13 - Renaissance Re-birth: Early Renaissance painting by Masaccio, Mantegna, Fra Angelico, and Botticelli; sculpture by Ghiberti and Donatello; Brunelleschi's Cathedral dome and Michelozzo's Palazzo Medici in Florence; Alberti's Sant'Andrea in Mantua. High Renaissance: Bramante's Tempietto in Rome; the geniuses Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, and Michelangelo; Titian in Venice. March 20 - Mannerism and the Baroque: Mannerist peculiarities: Palladio's Villa Rotunda in Vicenza; Palazzo Te in Mantua; painting of Pontormo, Parmigiano ,Bronzino, and Il Rosso; sculpture of Cellini. Baroque bravura in Rome: Caravaggio's drama; theatrical paintings that deceive; Bernini's animated sculpture; vast splendor of Maderno's Saint Peter's and Borromini's tiny San Carlo.