About How I Learned Art History, Specifically The Renaissance

This semester I learned quite a bit about art history, specifically The Renaissance and learned about the many great known and not so much talked about artist that took a part of the era. Although there are many artists that contributed to making art what it is today, both in the Italian and Northern Renaissance, I will be focusing on three specific artist and their contributions and influences.

Gian Lorenzo Bernini, Jan Van Eyck and Michelangelo Merisi or also known as Caravaggio are a few of many great artists that are spoken upon in the Renaissance era.

Renaissance art is defined as painting, sculpture, architecture, music and literature that was produced during the 14th-17th centuries in Europe. The influences were combined with the mindfulness of nature, a restoration of classical learning, and a more distinctive understanding of man.

Gian Lorenzo Bernini is the greatest Florentine sculptor in the seventeenth century as well as an impressive architect. He demonstrated the true Italian Renaissance style as his works focused on proportionality, linear perspective and showcasing human figure.

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Furthermore, he created the Baroque style of sculptor art, which is defined as “dramatic theatrically and elaborated ornamentation in contrast to the simplicity and orderly rationality of Renaissance art.” (Gardner’s Art Through The Ages; 15th edition) Bernini’s sculptor work “The Rape of Persephone” is a great example that reflects great emotion and tension in the most dramatic way possible, by means of extreme movement, and emotive facial expressions.

Jan Van Eyck is an important Flemish painter to the Northern Renaissance art because he invented the oil glazing technique and his paintings were focused more on secular subjects.

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He is also known as an innovator of veristic realism and one of the best artists of the early 15th century. “The Ghent Altarpiece” is what most people know him by because it’s nearly twelve feet high and considered the largest of the 15th century. Furthermore, it is the most influential oil painting ever made as it captivates all of Christianity from the annunciation to the symbolic sacrifice of Christ, to the “mystic lamb” on an altar in a heavenly kingdom field bleeding into the holy grail.

Michelangelo Merisi, also known as Caravaggio, was known as the leading Italian painter of the late 16th and 17th centuries. He became famous for the powerful and unsettling realism of his religious works. His creative techniques were his ability to compose contrast between light and dark and is said to have influenced European art in the Netherlands and Spain. Furthermore, he created paintings from stories of the Bible as visceral and often bloody dramas. A great example would be Caravaggio’s “Entombment”, which not only portrays naturalism into the representation of sacred themes, but also demonstrates the contrast between light and dark.

In conclusion, I started the semester with no true understanding of art, yet alone Renaissance art. But if I were to define what true art is in my own words, it would be something in the lines of, an artist creating works for their own satisfaction without thinking about what others may say about it. At the same time viewers should be able to see the hidden representation behind the work.

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About How I Learned Art History, Specifically The Renaissance. (2022, Jun 07). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/about-how-i-learned-art-history-specifically-the-renaissance-essay

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