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Renaissance Art

Background
Renaissance is the first historical period of Modern Age. It lasted the 15 th
and 16th centuries. Renaissance means rebirth and it refers to the
revival of classical culture as a prototype.
Along Renaissance Europe changed:
o Politics: nation-sates & Italian city-states consolidated.
o Religion: protestant reformation weakened Catholicism.
o Geography: Portugal & Spain explore seas and conquer lands.
o Economy: mercantilism & international commerce.
o Knowledge: press, humanism, Byzantine scholars took refuge in
Europe after the Ottoman expansion.
Italian Renaissance art is divided n three periods:
Period
Time
Characteristics
Artist
It is the transition Giotto.
between Middle Ages
and the Renaissance.
Artist
search
for
Trecento
14th & 15th naturalism
centuries
(individualized
characters,
beginnings
of
perspective).
15th century.
Quattrocent
o

Cinquecen
to

16th century.

Florence became the


center of art thanks to
merchants
who
sponsored it. Artist
belonged
to
intellectual
circles
that adapted Classical
culture,
and
they
wrote
treaties.
Searched
for
naturalism
in
painting, the third
dimension
is
achieved.
Rome became the
center of art thanks to
the Papal projects.
Renaissance
artistic
goals matured.

Brunelleschi,
Donatello,
Massaccio,
Boticelli.

Michelangelo,
Leonardo da Vinci,
Raphael.

Characteristics
Forms change according to
country and region.
o Follows
the
traits
of
Classical
Antiquity.
Architects studied Vitruvius.
Classical beauty is based on
harmony,
proportion,
rationality,
symmetry
&
geometry.
o Buildings
tend
to
horizontality.
o Unified space: inner space
can be entirely seen from
any point.
o Technical perfection based
on mathematics.
o Religious architecture: Latin
cross and Greek cross plans.
o Civil architecture: Palaces.
Great similarity with Greek
classical sculpture.
Idealization of human body.
Proportions, symmetry, balance.
Naturalism: intention to imitate
nature perfectly (forms, positions,
movement).
Simplicity
Classical subjects.
Interest for the human body.
Nudes; anatomic studies.
Materials: marble, bronze,
wood.
Shares characteristics with
sculpture:
human
body
idealized;
proportions,
symmetry,
balance,
naturalism, simplicity.
Interest for the human body
itself (humanism).
Techniques:
fresco
and
tempera.
Oil
painting

Artists

Italian
Renaissance
Architecture

Italian
Renaissance
Sculpture

Italian
Renaissance
Painting

Michelangelo.
Brunelleschi.
Leon
Alberti.

Battista

Donato Bramante.

Donatello.
Michelangelo.

Giotto.
Masaccio.
Botticelli.

introduced
in
the
Cinquecento.
Perspective: followed the
rules
proposed
by
Brunelleschi.
Main subjects: sacred art,
mythology, portrait.