The primary focus of the painters of the Early Renaissance was the imitation of nature and the creation of a believable three-dimensional reality on flat surface of a painting. The Early Renaissance in visual art encompasses the first half of the 15th century, and in Italy, Florentine artists took leadership in the development of a new style of painting focusing on illusion.
Frescoes - art created on damp plaster
Oil paints (a technique from the north)
Realistic portrayal of human nature
Chiaroscuro - use of shadows to show balance of light and dark
Science -particularly in anatomy
Linear perspective - allowed artist to represent objects in relative sizes
Giotto (1267 - 1337)
Giotto is considered to be the most influential artist on Renaissance painting.
Father of the Renaissance
Giotto’s dignified figures seemed to displace space, to stand upon the ground with real substance and weight.
The figures seem to extend both backward, into the picture, and forward, toward the spectator’s space.
The Scrovegni Chapel, Padua
Sermon to the Birds, St Francis Illuminated Manuscript Image, c 1270, Ghent, Belgium
Legend of St Francis: Sermon to the Birds, 1297-99
Baptism of Christ 1304-06
Filippo Brunelleschi (1337-1446)
Florentine architect and engineer
First to carry out a series of optical experiments that led to a mathematical theory of perspective.
His method of perspective had a dramatic impact on the depiction of 3-dimensional space in the arts
Dome of the Cathedral 1420-36 - Duomo, Florence
One point linear perspective
Pierro della Francesca
“ View of an Ideal City”
One of first artists to apply the new method of linear perspective in his fresco of the Holy Trinity
Used a barrel vaulted ceiling to imitate with precision the true appearance of architectural space
Figures depict accurate human anatomy
Holy Trinity 1425-28 Fresco, 667 x 317 cm
Tribute Money 1420's
New sense of naturalism in sculpture
Use of classical contrapposto stance (relaxed not rigid)
Statue of David considered first full scale nude since ancient times
St Mary Magdalen c. 1457 Wood, height: 188 cm Museo dell'Opera del Duomo, Florence
Andrea Mantegna (1430-1506)
Created unusual vantage points
Looking at figures from below
Lamentation of the Dead Christ the viewer is looking from the feet of the subject.
Effectively placed the viewer at the scene, adding to the sense of empathy
The Lamentation over the Dead Christ c. 1490 Tempera on canvas, 68 x 81 cm Pinacoteca di Brera, Milan
Sandra Botticelli (1445-1510)
First artist to paint a full-length female nude
In Birth of Venus the figure occupies the center of the work which was traditionally reserved for the Virgin. This work is possibly the most pagan image of the entire Renaissance.
The Birth of Venus c. 1485 Tempera on canvas, 172.5 x 278.5 cm Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence
The Adoration of the Magi (detail) c. 1475 Tempera on panel Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence
The detail shows the assumed self-portrait of the artist.
Lorenzo Ghiberti (1378-1455)
Sacrifice of Isaac 1401 Bronze relief Museo Nazionale del Bargello, Florence Lorenzo Ghiberti (1378-1455)
"There are three classes of people. Those who see; those who see when they are shown; those who do not see."
Which was Leonardo?
Leonardo da Vinci, 1452 - 1519
Virgin of the Rocks 1483-86 Oil on panel, 199 x 122 cm Musée du Louvre, Paris
Vitruvian Man 1492 Pen, ink, watercolor and metalpoint on paper, 343 x 245 mm Gallerie dell'Accademia, Venice
Anatomical studies of the shoulder 1510-11 Black chalk, pen and ink on paper, 289 x 199 mm Royal Library, Windsor
The Last Supper (with names of Apostles labelled) after cleaning 1498 Tempera on plaster 460 x 880 cm (15 x 29 ft.) Convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie (Refectory), Milan
Lady with an Ermine 1483-1490 Oil on wood 53.4 x 39.3 cm (21 x 15 1/2 in.) Czartoryski Museum, Cracow
Always thought himself a sculptor, not a painter
A contender for Renaissance Man
Conducted a battle of wills with Pope Julius II
Michelangelo Buonarroti 1475 - 1564
Ignudo Fresco Cappella Sistina, Vatican
David 1504 Marble, height 434 cm Galleria dell'Accademia, Florence
Pietà 1499 Marble, height 174 cm, width at the base 195 cm Basilica di San Pietro, Vatican
Pietà c. 1550 Marble, height: 226 cm Museo dell'Opera del Duomo, Florence
Model for the dome 1560 Wood Musei Vaticani, Rome
Dome of St Peter's 1564 - Basilica di San Pietro, Vatican
Pope Benedict XVI, Easter Mass 2007
Last Judgment 1537-41 Fresco, 1370 x 1220 cm Cappella Sistina, Vatican
The Last Judgment Detail Michelangelo’s Self Portrait
At 17 sent to Perugia, dead by age 37
Perugian, Florentine, & Roman periods – Roman most famous
"The young painter from Urbino thus adopted the artistic innovations of his elder colleagues, in particular those of Leonardo and Michelangelo, and synthesized them with his own aims." - Toman
Raphael Sanzio 1483 - 1520
Raphael's Tomb Pantheon, Rome
Raphael Portrait of Julius II 1511-12 Oil on wood, 108 x 80,7 cm National Gallery, London … a portrait "so animated and true to life that it was frightening to behold, as though it were actually alive" (Vasari).
The School of Athens 1510-11 Fresco Vatican, Stanza della Segnatura
Greatest of the Venetian School
Most versatile: portrait, landscape, mythological, & religious paintings
Manner & styles changed drastically throughout long life, but consistent interest in use of color
Titian 1485 - 1576
Assumption of the Virgin 1516-18 Oil on wood, 690 x 360 cm Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari, Venice
Bacchus and Ariadne 1520-22 Oil on canvas, 175 x 190 cm - National Gallery, London
Portrait of Philip II in Armour 1550-51 Oil on canvas, 193 x 111 cm Museo del Prado, Madrid