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Art History Lecture 1Giorgio Vasari (1511-1574)Rhetorics of praise and blame: humanistic movement (Renaissance)Art history as humanistic biographyHeinrich Wölfflin (1864-1945)Introduced idea of comparisonFormal analysis-analysis of visual forms including:*composition*color*figural style (realism, naturalism, idealization, abstraction)Understanding cultural forms and historical contextAby Warburg (1866-1929)Started art history library, became intellectual centerStudied cultures of Southwest America, MexicoIconographyErwin Panofsky (1892-1968)Refined iconography philosophicallyUnderstood what symbols meant in artIconologyconnection to culturePsychology of perceptionSocial historyT.J. Clark (b. 1943)Marxism-social and economic history-politicsLinda Nochlin (b. 1931)Restored women artists to deserved statusWomen were previously written out of art historyFeminism and art history-1970s: biological determinism-1980s onwards: gender as performance15th Century Italian Art: Early Renaissance (1402-1494) PaintingDuring the Middle Ages, painting was a mechanical art*guild system: master-apprentice, requests from patrons, work done at a shop (bottega)Mechanical vs. liberal art: mechanical art held in lower esteemMechanical art: done without “theory”Liberal art: has “theory” behind it*ex.: grammar, logic, arithmetic, astronomyPainting elevated to liberal art during Early Renaissance by Leon Battista Alberti in De pictura (1435)Humanists studied ancient Greek and Roman literature*humanism- literally means study of “Greek and Latin letters”*popularity rises in late 13th-14th c.*began to see painting as liberal art*campaign to elevate painting to liberal art and recover art theory*drew upon study of perspective done by ancients, which used geometry and other mathematical principles*study of proportion from proportional mathematics*geometrical optics*mythology in ancient art was also portrayed with artist’s interpretation*In 15th century, began studying ancient mythology and literature to create art according to own literary interpretations*Renaissance art is an imaginative reconstructionByzantines did not like paintings (religious images) in church, waves of iconoclasmpainters migrate to Northern and Western EuropeGothic tradition, naturalism comes from FranceNo concept of complementary colors during the RenaissanceMasaccio: 15th c. Florentine painter*”The Holy Trinity” (c. 1428 in Santa Maria Novella)*patrons: Lenzi, for family mausoleum* Altarpiece- located above & behind altar to help visualize divine being*Holy trinity-father (God), son and the Holy Spirit (represented as a dove)*memento mori- a command to remember death*”As you are now, I once was; as I am now, you will be”*style: realistic, appropriate proportions of the body, natural musculature*the first painting to show perspective*one-point perspective- the construction around a single point at eye level*point called infinity where parallel lines come together*“Tribute Money” (c. 1427)*true fresco- water-based paint on fresh plaster; paint turns into crystals of lime, lasts forcenturies (unless damaged by moisture)*aerial perspective-colors shift with distancePiero della Francesca*“Madonna and Child With Saints Adored” (c. 1472)*commissioned by Federico da Montefeltro*suspended figure from shell may represent a pearl*theme of sexual purity: a pearl is created without sexual act*”The Flagellation of Christ” (c. 1455)*portrays event during the Passion of ChristSandro Boticelli*”The Birth of Venus” (c. 1428)* ideal of beauty in the portrayal of VenusUseful Definitions:Quattrocento- artistic and cultural events in 15th century Italy (late Middle AgesEarly Renaissance)Patron- wealthy, powerful supporter of the artist; viewed as the art creators since they provided the idea and the moneyFranciscan monks- religious group following teachings of St. Francis of Assisi, started movement towards Italian Gothic style in the later Middle Ages (13th-14th c.)*most important Italian Gothic monument= church at Assisi Dominican monks- struggled against Renaissance movementFra Bartolomeo- Renaissance painter of religious figures; good at shading; his figures tend to be small and drapedTempera- mineral and organic pigments bound with egg yolkFresco secco- fresco on already dried plaster that has been moistened using pigments in egg yolk mediumto simulate fresh plasterCoffers- sunken square panels (or rectangle, octagonal) in a ceiling or vault*earliest samples found in ancient Greece and RomeBarrel vault- simplest type of vault, a series of arches one after anotherHue-pure color (no tint or shade)Saturation- intensity of color (is it intense or more muted?)Value- relative lightness/darkness of the color (useful tool in defining form and creating spatial illusions)Vanishing point- point on horizon where parallel lines appear to convergeGuilds- Early Renaissance artists belonged to guilds; professional trade organizations, responsible for inspecting art and materials used and giving artists their commissions for their worksApprenticeship- learning the craft involving living with a master artist, beginning between 7 and 15 years of ageIsocephallic composition- one that has all the heads of the figures on approximately the same levelRhetorical gestures- visual accompaniment to speech; often draw attention to person, statue or building nearby; express emotionContinuous narrative- snapshots of a story in one painting, often with climactic scene in centerMitre-hat worn by Catholic bishopCope- long mantle/cloak open in front and fastened at breast, worn by clergyCrosier- stylized staff of high-ranking clergy“Holy Conversation” (sacra conversazione)-holy Virgin and child surrounded by saintsSt. John the Evangelist- one of the 12 original apostles, only one not killed for his faith (i.e. not a martyr)Martyr- in Christianity, one who brings a testimony (written or verbal) of faith with the knowledge that their action will most likely result in imminent death and is killed for maintaining the beliefVirgin Mary- conceived Jesus through the Holy Spirit, which was announced by the angel Gabriel; she isnot considered “divine” but “blessed”; central to Catholic Christian faith in particularSt. John the Baptist- often portrayed with long hair (like Jesus himself); beheading of St. John is a common art theme*was beheaded by king Herod as ordered by the king’s daughter and the head put on a platterSt. Zenobius-

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