The Black Death is estimated to have killed 30% – 60% of Europe's population, reducing the world’s population from an estimated 450 million to between 350 and 375 million in 1400. This has been seen as creating a series of religious, social and economic upheavals which had profound effects on the course of European History. It took 150 years for Europe's population to recover. Because the plague killed so many of the poor population, wealthy land owners were forced to pay the remaining workers what they asked, in terms of wages. Because there was now a surplus in consumer goods, luxury crops could now be grown. This meant that for the first time in history, many, formerly of the peasant population, now had a chance to live a better life. Most historians now feel that this was the start of the middle class in Europe and England. 3
Humanism A cultural and intellectual movement during the Renaissance, following the rediscovery of the art and literature of ancient Greece and Rome. A philosophy or attitude concerned with the interests, achievements, and capabilities of human beings rather than with the abstract concepts and problems of theology and science. 5
HUMANISM a Focus on Human Beings: Education that perfected humans through the study of past models of civic and personal virtue. Value system that emphasized personal effort and responsibility. Physically and intellectually active life that was directed at a common good as well as individual nobility . 9
Renaissance Period in Europe from the late fourteenth through the sixteenth centuries, which was characterized by a renewed interest in human-centered classical art, literature, and learning. 10
Renaissance Humanists Petrarch Giovanni Boccaccio Cosimo de Medici Marsilio Ficino Niccolò Machiavelli Baldassare Castiglione Giordano Bruno 11
CIMABUE, Madonna Enthroned with Angels and Prophets, 12
Fresco A method of wall-painting on a plasterground. Buon fresco, or true fresco, was much used in Italv from the thirteenth to the sixteenth centuries. First, the arriccio is applied and upon this the design, or sinopia, is traced. An area. small enough to be completed in one day - the giornata - is covered with a final layer of plaster, the inionaco. The design is then redrawn and painted with pigments mixed with water. Fresco secco is painting on dry plaster and suffers, like distemper, from impermanence. 15
Chiaroscuro Italian word meaning “light-dark.” The gradations of light and dark values in two-dimensional imagery; especially the illusion of rounded, three-dimensional form created through gradations of light and shade rather than line. Highly developed by Renaissance painters. 20
31 DONATELLO, Saint Mark, Or San Michele, Florence, Italy, 1411–1413. Marble, 7’ 9” high. Modern copy in exterior niche. Original sculpture in museum on second floor of Or San Michele, Florence.
Contrapossto Italian for “counterpose.” The counterpositioning of parts of the human figure about a central vertical axis, as when the weight is placed on one foot causing the hip and shoulder lines to counter balance each other-often in a graceful s-curve. 32
34 MASACCIO, Holy Trinity, Santa Maria Novella, Florence, Italy, ca. 1424–1427. Fresco, 21’ 10’ 5/8” x 10’ 4 3/4”.
Masaccio Used perspective to construct an illusion of figures in three-dimensional space. 35
36 Notice symmetry created by the pyramidal composition. How many triangles can you count? Notice the significance of the donors (Renaissance interest in the individual), classical architecture, and the memento moriat the base. MASACCIO, Holy Trinity, Santa Maria Novella, Florence, Italy, ca. 1424–1427. Fresco, 21’ 10’ 5/8” x 10’ 4 3/4”.
47 DONATELLO, David, late 1440–1460. Bronze, 5’ 2 1/4” high. MuseoNazionale del Bargello, Florence.
48 ANDREA DEL VERROCCHIO, David, ca. 1465–1470. Bronze, 4’ 1 1/2” high. MuseoNazionale del Bargello, Florence.
Neoplatonism A compilation of Platonic, Aristotelian and Stoic ideas that experienced a strong revival during the late Middle Ages and the Renaissance. Central to the philosophy is the notion that spiritual things are real and that material things are not. The freeing of the spiritual element, the soul, from the material element, the body, should be the ultimate goal of all of mankind and could be achieved through knowledge and contemplation. 49
Neoplatonism Embraced by the powerful Medici family. All sources of inspiration, whether Biblical or Classical (Pagan) mythology, represent a means of ascending earthly existence to a mystical union with “the One”. 52
70 The Achievements of the Masters Leonardo da Vinci: superb master of line, pioneer of sfumato, inventor, naturalist, and painter of the soul’s intent. RaffaeloSanzio(a.k.a Raphael): younger master painter who incorporated elements of Leonardo and Michelangelo in to his own unique style. Michelangelo Buonarroti: master of sculpture, also excellent painter and architect, the man in demand. Venetian masters Bellini, Giorgione, Titian Palladio (architecture)
Leonard Da Vinci Motivated by intense curiosity and a optimistic belief in the human ability to understand the world. Art and science are two means to the same end: knowledge. 71
72 LEONARDO DA VINCI, cartoon for Madonna and Child with Saint Anne and the Infant Saint John, ca. 1505–1507. Charcoal heightened with white on brown paper, 4’ 6” x 3’ 3”. National Gallery, London.
LEONARDO DA VINCI, Leonardo da Vinci, Madonna of the Rocks, from San Francesco Grande, Milan, Italy, begun 1483. Oil on wood (transferred to canvas), 6’ 6 1/2” x 4’. Louvre, Paris. 73
sfumato A painting technique using an imperceptable, subtle transition from light to dark, without any clear break or line. The theory was developed and mastered by Leonardo da Vinci, and the term derives from the Italian word fumo, meaning vapor, or smoke. 74
Camera Obscura A technical aid, widelv used in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, which consisted of a darkened box or tent containing lenses and a mirror. The artist could project the image of an object or landscape onto the oil painting surface and then trace it out in charcoal or graphite. 75
Venetian School In the sixteenth century, artists such as Giorgione and Titian preferred a gentler, more sensuous approach to oil painting than had been adopted by the Florentine School . The Venetians used warm atmospheric tones. 106
107 GIOVANNI BELLINI and TITIAN, Feast of the Gods, from the Camerinod’Alabastro, Palazzo Ducale, Ferrara, Italy, 1529. Oil on canvas, 5’ 7” x 6’ 2”. National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. (Widener Collection).
108 GIORGIONE DA CASTELFRANCO (and/or TITIAN?), Pastoral Symphony, ca. 1508–1510. Oil on canvas, 3’ 7 1/4” x 4’ 6 1/4”. Louvre, Paris.
109 GIORGIONE DA CASTELFRANCO, The Tempest, ca. 1510. Oil on canvas, 2’ 8 1/4” x 2’ 4 3/4”. Galleria dell’Accademia, Venice.
110 TITIAN, Meeting of Bacchus and Ariadne, from the Camerinod’Alabastro, Palazzo Ducale, Ferrara, Italy, 1522–1523. Oil on canvas, 5’ 9” x 6’ 3”. National Gallery, London.
111 TITIAN, Venus of Urbino, 1538. Oil on canvas, 3’ 11” x 5’ 5”. Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence.
Mannerism A style that developed in the sixteenth century as a reaction to the classical rationality and balanced harmony of the high Renaissance; characterized by dramatic use of space and light; exaggerated color, elongation of figures, and distortions of perspective, scale, and proportion. 112
113 JACOPO DA PONTORMO, Entombment of Christ, Capponi Chapel, Santa Felicità, Florence, Italy, 1525–1528. Oil on wood, 10’ 3” x 6’ 4”.
114 PARMIGIANINO, Madonna with the Long Neck, from the Baiardi Chapel, Santa Maria deiServi, Parma,Italy, 1534–1540. Oil on wood, 7’ 1” x 4’ 4”. Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence.
115 BRONZINO, Venus, Cupid, Folly, and Time, ca. 1546. Oil on wood, 5’ 1” x 4’ 8 1/4”. National Gallery, London.
116 BRONZINO, Portrait of a Young Man, ca. 1530–1545. Oil on wood, 3’ 1 1/2” x 2’ 5 1/2”. Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (H. O. Havemeyer Collection, bequest of Mrs. H. O. Havemeyer, 1929).
117 TINTORETTO, Last Supper, 1594. Oil on canvas, 12’ x 18’ 8”. San Giorgio Maggiore, Venice.
118 PAOLO VERONESE, Christ in the House of Levi, from the refectory of Santi Giovanni e Paolo, Venice, Italy, 1573. Oil on canvas, 18’ 3” x 42’. Galleria dell’Accademia, Venice.