Early Medieval Romanesque

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Castles, Cathedrals and Manuscripts

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Early Medieval Romanesque

  1. 1. Early Medieval Art <ul><li>Castles, Cathedrals and Manuscripts </li></ul>
  2. 2. Background - Where did we leave off? <ul><li>after the center of Roman power is moved to Byzantium, by the 5th Century, the Eastern portion of the empire is successful, now known as the Byzantine Empire—and continues on for almost a 1000 years </li></ul><ul><li>meanwhile, the Western Roman empire weakens and falls victim to Barbarian invaders and is virtually powerless by the end of the 5th century </li></ul>
  3. 3. <ul><li>often called the “Dark Ages”, this period in Western Europe saw the rise of common law, universities, present-day languages and national states </li></ul><ul><li>during these trying times the Church ruled as it was the only stable institution remaining </li></ul><ul><li>everyone lived their lives in service to the Church as preparation for eternity </li></ul>The so-called Dark Ages?
  4. 4. <ul><li>Charlemagne was crowned Emperor on Christmas day in the year 800 and became the first Holy Roman Emperor </li></ul><ul><li>his domain grew to include all of the former Roman territory except Britain, Spain, Southern Italy and Africa </li></ul>Charlemagne <ul><li>out of the chaos arises the Carolingian dynasty, stable for 150 years </li></ul><ul><li>one of its greatest leaders was Charles the Great (aka Charlemagne), King of the Franks </li></ul>
  5. 5. <ul><li>he ordered every monastery and abbey to establish a school where students could learn arithmetic, grammar and psalms </li></ul><ul><li>preserved ancient manuscripts </li></ul><ul><li>hired scholars from England and Ireland to rewrite old texts and make new ones </li></ul><ul><li>center of empire was Aix-la-Chapelle (present day Aachen) </li></ul>Palace chapel of Charlemagne <ul><li>Aachen, Germany. </li></ul><ul><li>792-805 CE </li></ul>
  6. 6. <ul><li>strong government ended after his death in 814 </li></ul><ul><li>again western Europe is in shambles </li></ul><ul><li>weak central government and the need for protection leads to the formation of Feudalism (land is the source of wealth and power) </li></ul>Post-Charlemagne
  7. 7. <ul><li>in this system, weak noblemen give up their land for powerful lords in return for protection and remain on the land as administrators </li></ul><ul><li>• the serfs, or poor peasants, remained to work the land (for payment of protection) and were allowed to keep only enough food to feed themselves </li></ul><ul><li>• groups of monks lived and studied behind the protected walls of monasteries </li></ul><ul><li>• many early monasteries were built of wood and did not survive </li></ul>
  8. 8. <ul><li>Village Church, Ujue, Spain </li></ul><ul><li>11th Century </li></ul>
  9. 9. <ul><li>Monastery of San Juan de la Pena, Spain c. 922 </li></ul>
  10. 10. <ul><li>Codex format (like the books we know today) invented as early as the 3rd Century BCE </li></ul><ul><li>papyrus scrolls still common up to 1st Century </li></ul><ul><li>until the development of the printing press in the 15th Century, Western books (Codices) were made by hand </li></ul>The Codex <ul><li>most people were illiterate </li></ul><ul><li>this was the work of monks who took pride in this work </li></ul>
  11. 11. <ul><li>symbols used to identify the four Evangelists (Matthew-angel, Mark – lion, Luke – bull, John – eagle) </li></ul><ul><li>focus was on inner expressive qualities, feelings and ideas rather than formal and literal renderings </li></ul><ul><li>often decorated with miniature paintings done with silver, gold and rich colours </li></ul><ul><li>portrayed information in beautiful and complex ways </li></ul><ul><li>books written in Latin using beautifully designed letters </li></ul>
  12. 12. <ul><li>Franco-Saxon Gospels, </li></ul><ul><li>c. 850 </li></ul>St. John Flat Space with few to no shadows Complex, precise celtic knotwork used as a border Dramatic lines in robes
  13. 13. St. John - Detail *Note the Bright Colours...
  14. 14. <ul><li>Carolingian Manuscript </li></ul><ul><li>from the Gospel Book of Archbishop Ebbo of Reims </li></ul><ul><li>c. 830 </li></ul>St. Matthew Even more Dramatic Drapery Lines! Awkward Perspective and Some background, but not realistic
  15. 15. <ul><li>c. 870, gold and semiprecious stones </li></ul>Lindau Gospels - Back Cover Extremely Expensive - not for the general public! Incredibly Ornate Knotwork
  16. 16. The Annunciation Leaf from a Breviary or Missal German 12th Century Colours and gold leaf on vellum *few shadows, reduced depth, symbolism
  17. 17. <ul><li>by 11th Century, Romanesque style accepted throughout most of Western Europe </li></ul><ul><li>Feudal system reaches its peak during this period </li></ul><ul><li>constant disputes and open conflict as lords, noblemen and kings were constantly fighting each other to protect or add more land </li></ul>Romanesque Art
  18. 18. <ul><li>fortification of dwellings begins </li></ul><ul><li>by 12th Century the stone castle emerges as the symbol of authority </li></ul>Castle of Penafiel, Spain c. 14th Century
  19. 19. Romanesque Architecture <ul><li>thick outer walls eliminated windows </li></ul>
  20. 20. <ul><li>drafty rooms sparsely furnished and lacked decoration </li></ul>
  21. 21. <ul><li>stairs were steep and passageways dark and narrow making movement difficult </li></ul>
  22. 22. <ul><li>occasionally tapestries were hung to keep dampness out </li></ul><ul><li>the great hall was where meals were served </li></ul>
  23. 23. <ul><li>only warmth came from fireplaces </li></ul>
  24. 24. <ul><li>growth of trade and industry in the 13th Century brought about an economy based on money rather than land </li></ul><ul><li>cities sprang up, and castles became more and more obsolete </li></ul>City Walls River Adaja, Spain 11th Century 2.4 km long 8 towers 9 gates Shift to Fortified Cities <ul><li>unsettling times still necessitated the use of protective walls </li></ul>
  25. 25. <ul><li>as towns expanded in population, these walls forced buildings to become higher (as high as several stories) buildings also were built out over the foundations below </li></ul>
  26. 26. <ul><li>at the center of every town stood a church </li></ul><ul><li>entire community joined in when a new church was needed </li></ul>Church of Santa Maria, Spain 12th to 13th centuries
  27. 27. Church of Santiago de Compostela, Spain 11th to 13th centuries • worshippers would embark on a difficult journey to pilgrimage churches which were built larger and larger • people believed that praying for a saint would assure plentiful harvests, cures for diseases, and the promise of eternal salvation • soon churches and shelters were built along these routes
  28. 28. Radiating Chapels <ul><li>larger number of clergy involved led to construction of more altars </li></ul><ul><li>these chapels projected out from the buildings near the apse and were a common element of Romanesque structures </li></ul>Santillana del Mar Collegiate Church, Apse exterior
  29. 29. The Barrel Vault • the need for stone roofs led to rebirth of this Roman building technique: barrel vaults • the thick walls and lack of windows led to the term “fortresses of God”
  30. 30. Romanesque Church San Sernin, Toulouse, France c. 1080-1120
  31. 31. • inside is spacious but dark and gloomy • no surprises; nave, side aisles, transept and apse are quickly identified • not fancy or ornate • feels like a stone castle Plan of Romanesque Church
  32. 32. • relief sculptures were commonly found on the tympanum (half round panel over the doorway of the church) and the capitals of the columns inside West portal and tympanum, Leyre Monastery, Spain, 12th Century Romanesque brought about a revival of the sculptor’s craft • churches used relief sculptures as a way to teach the illiterate
  33. 33. • position of tympanum was ideal for worshippers gaze • shape of tympanum demanded larger figures towards the center and smaller ones to the sides • popular subjects like the last judgment were well-suited
  34. 34. Last Judgment, Church of Santa Maria, Spain Can you figure out which side is heaven and hell?
  35. 35. Santa Maria façade, Spain 12th to 13th centuries *multiple stories flank the facade
  36. 36. Santa Maria façade detail
  37. 37. Capital carvings from the cloister Cathedral at Pamplona Spain 12th to 13th Centuries *compact relief designs and vivid narratives
  38. 38. Cathedral at Pamplona
  39. 39. Christ in Majesty Wall painting from San Clemente Tahull, Spain, 12th Century <ul><li>large paintings were also used to decorate churches during this period </li></ul><ul><li>paintings often designed to fit architectural elements </li></ul><ul><li>broad bands of colour for background </li></ul>

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