Movements: Fall 2013

We can clearly see Matisse’s influence on Kandinsky’s painting with the color and mood. Like much of Expressionist art, nature had been distorted with in the sense of detail and color. This painting has a beautiful sense of shades of blue in it and the only contrasting factor is her red skirt with black polka dots on it. The brush strokes follow those of the Impressionists where like Monet, there is no solid definition between objects and details but in fact just brush strokes of different color to make differentiations.
he painting captured quick impression of the scene rather than focused on minute details of the forms, the characteristics of which had a great influence on impressionism. The  touch created the impression of fluttering flags and animated a sky crossed by wispy clouds. The tall format further accentuates the contrast between the stability of the figures, placed in the lower part of the canvas, and the movement of the elements subject to the wind in the upper part. The flag in the foreground is particularly striking because of its red and white stripes, painted with very free brushstrokes.
Piere-Auguste Renoir was one of the most significant artists of Impressionism. La Grenouillere refer as the frog pond, I think this painting is a representative master piece of early impressionism, especially regarding on the visual effect formed by shimmer color and light. La Grenouillere portrayed a group of men in suits and women dressed in crinoline sought shade and enjoyed themselves in this quiet and pleasant venue.  Claude Monet’s version concentrated more on the landscape depiction, while Renoir focused more on how the light reflected on the figures. Renoir’s earlier experience as a porcelain painter equipped him with great capability to transform subtle color changes and reflections of light onto white surface. The short and quick brushstrokes applied captured the water ripples and movement of the water in the sunshine, and thus make the whole painting dynamic from certain distance. The light became the essential element to merge the people and the landscape as a whole.The rapid, sketchy method which endeavored to capture the impression of subjects at that moment may lack delicate detail descriptions, yet the hazy figures presented more vivid and engaged images for viewers.
I think this work well carries the features of impressionism - evoke rather than specify, suggest rather than describe.I like the way that Edouard presented the dress - each stroke looks casual and random, but delivers exactly the feeling of a loose and grand suit. The amazing thing is that the whole painting was largely done in the dark red color, but one can easily tell the layers in it. The background looks busy at the first glance but it goes so well with the two ladies in the front and really give our eyes a 3 dimensions feeling. The faces of the two ladies were not precisely describe - one even can't see the whole face of the second lady, but it's not hard to imagine the real scenery and how they focus on the arranging the flowers. The little girl in yellow was also painted in a vague way - the little girl here fertilized the content of the painting and adds on the feeling of space in the picture.
The Mother of God of Tenderness Towards Evil HeartsThis is one of my favorite artists of the early 20th century, and of Russian avant-garde in particular. This painting clearly reflects the unbroken ties between the old tradition and modern art, as well as daring and eager search for new expressive means and techniques. Created at the start of the First World War, the picture acquired a special significance as the artist’s response to the tragic events of the war. The painting radiates with spiritual light, the bright, vibrant and at the same time translucent colours contributing to the powerful impact it makes on the viewer. The painter himself said that the face was “the highest possible form of expression”.This instilling and lofty icon of the Virgin Mary is one of the most powerful images by Petrov-Vodkin.
Henri de Toulouse - Lautrec one of the greatest artists of Post-Impressionism. French, who lived in Paris on Montmartre during the most fascinating period of art history ever happened to this city. Montmartre of this period was magnetic place for artists, writers and philosophers from all over the world. With its concentration of bohemian lifestyle Montmartre of this times probably can be compared only to New York mid 20 century. Toulouse - Lautrec was commissioned to producing the posters for the recently opened Moulin-Rouge cabaret. Besides great posters, pictures of the famous dancers, he has left countless pictures of women in private moments, during their toilet, the awakening moments and relaxing time. Likewise Edgar Degas whom Heri Toulouse- Lautrec deeply admired. The theme, the unusual perspective and framing are things that Lautrec has learned from Degas. But the humanity with witch he observed and painted his models differs. For making "The Model Resting" Toulouse-Lautrec used tempera on cardboard. The viewpoint which not allows us to see the face of the model, the way the model dressed and things that we see around her are not very natural, meaning that the scene seems to be directed by Lautrec. Also, it seems that the artists consciously puts the viewer into the position of voyeur, of someone who is invisible for the object he is looking at. Like the cabaret artist who is being surrounded by beautiful half-dressed dancers all the time and being invisible to them. 
Marc Chagall was a Russian – French artist who experimented with different styles of Modern art movements: Cubism, Expressionism, Symbolism, Fauvism, Surrealism and others.Throughout his life Chagall tries to preserve his childhood memories of the home town Vitebsk. This is his escape from reality and the source of continuous inspiration; he repeats his favourite themes and motives many times. His work is full of poetic lyricism and nostalgia about the gone world. Having moved to Paris so different, diverse and cosmopolitan, where he was free to experiment in different styles and techniques, he at large remains the singer of his homeland.In this painting we see a man wearing traditional prayer clothes. The figure is very solid, one hand bound with leather straps is oversized symbolising the tie to the religious traditions. The facial expression is almost bear of emotions but the posture and direct and sad expression in his eyes grab the viewer as if pushing to answer why the Jews never had a chance for a peaceful life. The black and white colour scheme and geometric patterns set the composition. The abstracted shapes around the figure in this ritual outfit transform this portrait into a symbol for the Jewish world of his youth. The portrait's emotional impact is incredible – he speaks to viewers without saying a word.
Claude Monet, was one of the most well known painters of his time. He was known as an impressionist painter and his skills were exceptional. His use of the color and brush work were brilliant and could create effects that not many artists managed to do. His depiction of light and reflection was more than commendable. The impressionist style of painting was sketch like and more rough than defined. However, even though this was the style of Monet's paintings, he managed to create reality in such a beautiful way in all of his works, that the viewer is left awestruck. We can see his skill in this particular work as well. This is a view of the road to Vétheuil which was on the way to his home as well. This was the last of this view that he had painted. It is said that he has painted 5 views of The road to Vétheuil. This particular work shows the road in autumn time. We can see his use of perspective : with a central vanishing point, like that which is used in linear perspective. The colors used are extremely impactful to the viewers eye even though the color palette is light. The impressionist painters would have this unique style: instead of using the exact shade or tone of a color,  they would use either a contrasting color or a more saturated version of a color that was present at a particular point. This in turn would create beautiful art work. Monet, like many other Impressionist painters would primarily paint outdoor/landscape scenes and he was known for this. His work can speak for itself. The movement of light, the creation of all elements in the scene, even though they did not actually have a defined form and were mere flicks of the brush, all go to show the mastery of Monet. This piece appealed to me because of the use of colors and the technique. It gives a very calm and soothing feel when one views it. 
Un sentier aux sablons - Sisley - 1883From 1883 to 1889 Sisley lived in Les Sablons (also known as Veneux-les-Sablons), a village situated at the junction of the Seine and Loing rivers on the southern fringe of the forest of Fontainbleau. A path at Les Sablons 1883 is one of only a handful of paintings that seems to have been painted in the studio rather than en plein air. Sisley has organised the picture around a central avenue into the picture plane, a simple composition much favoured by the artist. The grassy path through the village is likely to be the route he took each time he went to the butcher or on a field trip to paint. Unusually, in this painting he has given some prominence to the figures: a man in his backyard chats with a passer by, a telling aside on the intimacy and domesticity of village life.Sisley animates the painting with sparkling brushwork, contrasting areas of thin paint with thickly worked passages to respond to different textures and features of the scene. The swell of sky is built with broad brushstrokes that meld cerulean blue with white interlaced with whiplash whites and yellows. It is not surprising to learn that the artist moved to Les Sablons 'where the air would be better.' He has matched the zest of execution with a simple, nuanced palette to create a sensitive, fragile atmosphere.A path at Les Sablons is small enough and was painted quickly enough to be counted as an actual 'impression'. It is interesting, however, that Sisley tended to work out his compositions first in drawings, which he carefully numbered in a notebook. It seems that Sisley wanted to know precisely how to organise his compositions before beginning to paint, thus freeing himself from making decisions while he worked and enabling him to respond with real immediacy to the chromatic and gestural qualities of a motif.
One of the co-founders of impressionism, Renoir employs a style in quick brush strokes and his paintings are notable for their vibrant light and saturated colour. His works are easily identifiable by their use of bright colors, bold lines, light-hearted subjects and ambivalence. I have always liked his iconic portraiture works of nude women and lovely ladies, but this work of the Cathedral of San Marco also strikes me a lot. In this painting, Renoir depicts the domes of the Cathedral of San Marco gleaming in the midday sun. Although in some way it seems traditional as adopting the linear and atmosphere perspective from the Renaissance period, it carries all the major impressionist techniques and revolutionized art ideas. We see the sketch-like quality, the extreme abstraction and looseness of forms, the work loosely covered with bold and quickly strokes of bright light colors. We can feel the light falling through the surface of the church. What I love the most are the figures of people of pigeons depicted in great impression on the piazza. All of these give me a feeling of care-free, warm, light-hearted and joyful, which are also prominent ideas in Renoir's works. 
Though he was a founding member of the Impressionist group of painters, Renoir left the group after 1877. He replaced the broad loose short bright  brushstroke style of the former with a classically inspired style with bold outlines and . Along with other artists of the period Renoir sought to capture modern life in its daily surroundings.His background as a porcelain painter contributed to his expertise in effective colour combination.His gift for painting figures and portraiture and capturing the spirit of the moment is evident in this delightful painting that captures the final moment of two acrobats after their act-from a circus that was a permanent feature in Paris. His eye for detail and for capturing Renoir´s works are easily identifiable by their use of bright colors, light-hearted subjects- the bold lines that he would come to use later are not evident in this panting as it was before his ‘ingres period’ where his art shifted in terms of style and technique. In this picture the Impressionist tendency to use light colours and quick brushstrokes is evident however there is a more blending than his earlier paintings. The light that diffuses the painting creates the mood and the spirit that is so typical of his work.Renoir was fortunate to have had the patronage of several avant-garde patrons which allowed him the luxury of experimentation which he did with various styles through his successful and long career as an artist.
This piece of jewelry in gold, corroded glass and email cloisonné from Rene Lalique embodies the the Art Nouveau period. At this time, jewelry was undergoing a radical transformation, and the French designer-jeweler-glassmaker Rene Lalique was popularizing these changes.Lalique glorified nature in jewelry, extending the repertoire to include new aspects of nature—such as dragonflies or leaves—inspired by Japanese art. The jewelers were used mainly sculpted and enameled gold, and precious stones receded. Diamonds were usually subsidiary,and less familiar materials such as molded glass became very popular, as for this piece.The shape of this necklace, closely following the line of the neck and fitting to it, belongs to a frequent type of jewellery of the Art Nouveau. 
I’ve visited the exhibition of Georges Braque in Paris recently and I found the cubism movement to be very fascinating.  As I haven’t found many works of Braque in Google art project, I’ve decided to describe an interesting painting of Diego Rivera.Young Man with a Fountain Pen is one of analytic cubism painting of Diego Rivera. Rivera adopts primitivistic style of Cézanne and Gauguin. But he goes further with simplifying the shapes of the objects, he depicts them by the means of geometrical figures.  At the same time Rivera tries to show the man from different perspectives turning him through space. Thus the parts of the objects twist, blend and shift one another. The borders are sharp. The lines are fractured, straight and static. We can see no lightened spaces or bright colors. The palette is sober, restrained and rather dark.  The whole painting is highly abstract as Rivera broke all the real forms of all the objects.
Ernst Ludwig Kirchner was a German expressionist working in the Brücke group that also compromised artists like  Karl Schmidt-Rottluff, Emil Nolde and Max Pechstein. The members of the group were among those whos' work was considered degenerate by the Nazi Regime and the exhibition "Degenerate Art" which was launched in 1937 in order to humiliate the artists also showed paintings by Kirchner. In 1938 he committed suicide. The scene is the artists studio and the two girls scetched in thick strong linear brush strokes are probably his two favorite models Marcella and Senta. The postures of the girls seem to express discomfort and convey the feeling of shame. The simple and rough shapes that form their bodies are marked by strong dark lines like it was typical for the German wood engraving, an old technique which was very influencial for German expressionist painting along with the the formal language of native, primitive sculpture. The painting shows the typical liberal use of color with the deliberat use of complementary colors for the shades (red on green, blue on yellow) to enhance luminocity.The spontaneous scetch-like depiction of naked women - usually outside in landscapes - was a central element of the group’s approach to painting. In this sense it is important to note, that the background shows an unfinished landscape painting. This may indicate, that we are actually witnessing the process of  a new artwork, namely the landscape and the models getting prepared or resting in between sessions of painting. It would be worth investigating if a similar painting by Kirchner actually exists or existed.
The history of Russian impressionism is associated with K. Korovin's paintings. He felt the poetry in Russian nature, as he described it himself, he "strove to blend with nature,dissolving in its element and intercepting the barely tangible current of space fusing them with his own pulse". His paintings were characterized by their impulsiveness and spontaneity. The artist's creative road is the charm of transforming the world influenced by the elements of light. The painting "Fishes, wine, fruit" is one of the most splendid coloristic examples of nocturnal still lives. The primary element of this still life is a dramatic interaction between color and light. The light plays with cool reflexes on the mirror like fish scale, acquires warmth on the fruit and finally reddens like a ruby in the depths of the bottle filled with wine. The light blends with color, penetrating deeply into the objects. By using wide, sweeping and rich brush strokes the artist shows the importance of color itself and treats it like an animated object. He is creating the sense of plastic uniformity of the entire world.
The reason why I picked Edvard Munch’s painting “Starry Night” (1922-24) is because it conveys a certain feeling and an expression that are totally different from what I have seen before in a Munch’s painting.Munch, a Norwegian “Expressionist” artist dedicated his life to depict how he really felt. Unfortunately, his life was plagued by a series of sad and unwanted events that scarred him for life. He lost both his mother and beloved sister from tuberculosis at a very young age.What we perceive in most of Edvard Munch’s paintings are recurrent feelings of loneliness, anxiety, horror, love longing and death. His paintings: “The Scream” (1893), “Melancholy” (1894) and the “Dance of Life” (1899) are perfect examples of Munch’s troubled mind.“Starry Night” (1922-24) is a ‘remake’ of a painting he did in 1893 also called “Starry Night”. In the first painting, Munch used mostly dark colors that conveyed his sadness and alienation from the world. On the other hand, in his second painting we find joyful colors that depicted a calmer mood. The painter also drew some shady figures that emulate two lovers, and other figures that seem to interact with each other. By repainting “Starry Night” later in his life, and by using a different technique, perhaps Munch was trying to express that he felt more at ease with himself and the universe? I don’t know, but I certainly see a totally Edvard Munch in this painting which I find very unusual, and almost unrecognizable.
The Church at Auves is an oil painting, created in June 1890 by Vincent van Gogh.  Today, it can be seen in the Museum d’Orsay in Paris.  The Church at Auves is a departure from Impressionism and Neoimpressionism.  Van Gogh applied paint in multiple directional dashes, easily seen on the grass and paths around the church as well as on the church.  This creates a sense of movement and energy in the painting which is truly amazing.  It is full of life.  The paint is built up, showing three dimentionality, known as impasto.  This painting falls under the category of Expressionism.  The gothic style church painted by Van Gogh is clearly not a true depiction of the actual church.  Van Gogh compromises the true appearance of the church by his thoughts and feelings.  Van Gogh suffers from serious mental illness and perhaps views the church this way due to his condition.  The broken lines and curves of the roof make the church appear alive and moving, almost lifting into the textured blue sky.  
I chose this painting because it has a modern sensibility. The combination of Impressionist brush work and color with a sense of realism gives this painting interest and depth that many Impressionist works of the period lacked. Some have criticized Degas as a misogynist for painting and sculpting girls or women, especially dancers, in awkward and unflattering positions. Certainly this piece is not flattering. I do find it compelling though, as he chooses to show the discomforts that women (and girls) must endure. I don’t think it is exploitative. I think it is enlightened. The simple forms, and use of color are seemingly in contrast to the uncomfortable situation for the girl who is mid-action, getting out of the bath while having her hair combed. She is literally being untangled. This is an ordinary occurrence-not a special event. The colors and brushwork speak to the era, but the sometimes awkward positions we must negotiate, are common to all. The female is not idealized nor brutalized. She is not overly sexualized. No woman is always graceful or beautiful. We don’t see faces, which some may interpret as consistent with the misogyny theory, but it can also be seen as not exploiting--showing less and not identifying individuals, keeping the scene generic.  Degas’ painting has many Impressionist elements as well as realist elements in both formal and informal qualities.
I picked this piece because I have always loved the ballerina works by Degas and as a child, I remember being taken to various galleries to see lots of different art but it was always his which I remembered at a young age.  This work is pastel over ink monotype on laid paper and Degas was unique in combining these two mediums.  In fact, he was generally considered to be hugely inventive in his technique and endlessly experimental.  According to the gallery's website, Degas created the image by putting ink on a copper plate using brushes, rags and fingers but without scratching the surface and then transferring the picture to dampened paper by using the pressure of a printing press.  He then added layers of pastels to alter the monochrome image and create rich accents and veils of superbly chalky colour.This work reflects the subject matter which Degas favored, depicting the high society of Paris life.  Likewise, this subject of dance perfectly complements the Impressionist's preoccupation with fleeting light and movement.  I think the technique he used by layering the pastels on top of the ink gives the dancers an extremely delicate and graceful shape and also gives their outfits a real sense of texture.  Degas commented in several interviews that he very much admired classical sculptures and saw the same beauty in ballet dancers.  This made him focus in his paintings on their gestures and poses as they performed their routines.  I love that in this piece, our eyes are drawn to the luminous ballerina who is dancing in the spotlight judging by the light and shadows portrayed even though she is not in the centre of the piece which suggests it is a snap shot of the time rather than a deliberately posed situation.  His brushwork shows her femininity and delicate features in an ethereal way.  In addition,  I think that his use of light in the piece and the scene he has created is consistent with the Impressionist movement albeit his technique of executing it is not.  We see a cropped view of the stage which suggests a Japanese influence which we know he followed.  Interesting also are the vague shapes in the background of the other ballerinas as they are almost vapourish and dissolved into the background.
Titian was the leading artist of Venetian school. The subject portrayed was controversial, it was argued to be a portrait a young lady or a portrait of Flora. This reflected a very essential art convention of renaissance period, which is when artist described the mythological theme, the figure possessed humanistic attributes and emotion. Titian was a master at picturing the beauty of female, the use and application of color made the figure gentle and plump and conveyed a sense of vitality and luxury.Titian had been profoundly influenced by Giorgione, the tone of this painting was quite vaporous yet the contour line of the figure was accurate and smooth. Compared to Giorgione’s “the Storm”, the humidity in the air gave that scenery a mystery and harmony sense. Regarding the built environment of Titian’s art work, the prosperity of Venice as the trade and transportation hub, desires for secular pleasures awaked. The mist covered in the painting delivered a feeling of humanistic warmth.
 To make the Virgin Mary look graceful and refined, Parmigianino elongated her in lengths not natural to human form - her long neck, long fingers, torso and feet. Even the angel standing beside her has legs too long according to the rest of the proportions. While we saw that the Renaissance and Baroque artists liked to put a solid column in portraits to give power and balance to an image, Parmigianino places an oddly shaped column with unequal proportion in the background. Even the arrangement of the figures in the painting are unconventional with everyone crammed onto one side of Mary instead of balancing it out by having two two on each side. 
Adriaen van de Velde was a Dutch painter very well-known for his landscapes. And here we see one of his best works with secular scene on it. The pose of the man in the couple is very stable and strong, he is leaning on a cane, moreover his face expression is very confident and even strict all of this details lay emphasis on the sense of power and dignity of this man.  The lady near him also underlines his importance as she looks like to be under his protection. Northern baroque have a similarity with northern renaissance in depicting microscopic details. We even can distinguish a lace pattern on the nursemaid’s head-dress and a roof of some little house hidden behind the trees. But still it is obvious that it is a baroque painting as we can see no symmetry, the composition is in motion it’s not static. There are some diagonals for example the dog, the boy and the couple. The whole image is made in realism manner pursuing all the details of everyday life and of beauty of the nature. 
I have chosen one of my most favorite works of art. Ecce Ancilla Domini! or the Annunciation was painted by Dante Gabriel Rossetti who was a part of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood. We can see that Dante’s painting takes us back almost to early Italian painting with the subject being a very popular one in Renaissance art but also mainly because Dante wanted to follow their attitude towards religion and art – to read the Bible and them himself visualize what the scene is to him. The painting is full of simplicity and a sort of honesty that shows us how such an ancient story can still be visualized so freshly and become sort of relatable. The only signs of opulence in the painting are the halos and the fire on the angels feet. Apart from that the image is mostly bare with a lot of use of the color white. The strange angle in which the Virgin is sitting is most definitely not in lack of form but rather to portray the awkwardness or nervousness she must be feelings. To me this paintings is very psychological in it’s intensity. 
This piece is a diamond and silver epaulette garniture that was created in 1782.The 18th century has seen the development of the brilliant-cut with its multiple facets. Diamonds sparkled as never before and came to dominate jewellery design. Frequently mounted in silver to enhance the stone's white colour, magnificent sets of diamond jewels were essential for court life. The largest were worn on the bodice, while smaller ornaments could be scattered over an outfit.It embodies the elaborate fashions and the luxury of the Rococo period. Its design is also typical from this period, since we can notice a pompon, that was popularized by in France during the late 18th century by Queen Marie-Antoinette, Louis XVI's wife and a true jewelry lover, who also used to favour large gold pendant set with gemstones as this piece.
Italian painter Sebastiano Ricci’s work transitioned from Baroque to Rococo. This painting has the colours, the playfulness, the curves, the lightness of a Rococo painting.Venus is perched at the top of the pyramid of graceful figures as her son Cupid (painted in gentle creamy pastel colours) hovers around her. Attendants, languid poses, the fresh vivid colours, a sense of leisure and playfulness are all part of this painting that captures Venus sitting triumphant on her throne.Different skin tones are used, but all light and fresh. The sky is almost sprayed with wisps of clouds with pink accents (complementing the pink fleshtones). Venus is the lightest of them all as she almost glows from her perch. The red cloth under her serves to exaggerate the glow of her skin. There is nothing hurried about the painting and the sense is of a languid scene being played out. Cupid helps himself to pearls from a tray as an attendant behind Venus holds a string that flows onto her shoulder.Sebastiano Ricci, who travelled extensively during his lifetime, moved from the heavy, dramatic Baroque paintings to the elegant and delicacy of Rococo whimsy and this painting represents this beautifully. 
The portrait of Tolstoy depicts the man dressed as a peasant but very mighty, deeply immersed in his own thoughts. In a way we can compare the stance in the portrait to the Michelangelo’s David sculpture – a man of Renaissance, a thinking, determined being who makes a choice and commits to act on that choice. Tolstoy born in nobility (a privileged class) after his youth experience later in life renounced his aristocratic lifestyle. Throughout his life he searched for a simpler mode of existence and often spent time engaged in physical agricultural labour. In this portrait Tolstoy seems to be calm and observing, his hands are open and tucked in his belt. Barefoot is a symbol, through which Repin presented the tensions within the contemporary Russian society and emphasised a common man of labour, experiencing daily chores in terrible conditions without much hope or prospects for a better life.
I chose this painting of Jean Francois Millet because I feel it perfectly represents the movement of Realism in France at that time. He depicts the plight of the common man in a backbreaking job of hoeing hard rock, thistle-ridden earth, into farming land. He was a naturalist and unapologetically portrayed peasants daily struggle to survive. Millet did not consider himself to be a socialist or an agitator and believed man was condemned to bear the burden of his fate.At the time the Parisian Bourgeoisie found Millets portrayal of the peasant to be brutish and frightening.  We would have to assume that many in the middle and upper classes did not want face and think about the cruel, daily struggles of the peasants. Even though the background of the painting is beautifully done in mute colors, all I can see is the stark sense of hopelessness and exhaustion in the man’s face and body as he supports himself on his hoe.  An effective portrayal of reality.
The Religious Procession (Krestny Khod) is a one of the most popular subjects in Russian painting of this period. “Krestny Khod” is a festive religious walk in with icons and gonfalons dedicated to important events.  Probably, the Procession that we see at this painting was dedicated to the blessing of the new development – we notice the landscape which is very poor, there is no richness and poetic of nature which is very typical for Russian culture. We notice realistically shown hacked away trees right behind this big group of people. Repin depicts all possible social classes of this place (Kursk Gubernia) - burghers, merchants, priests, seminary students, young women, peasants and beggars. Every person of this big crowd has a face shown with very special care and accuracy. Nevertheless we do not see the social equality before God here. If we look little closer, right in the middle of the painting and right behind the priest we find a group of rich people separated from poor men and beggars by constables and the ring of peasants. Easy to notice that artist uses critical eye to show this rich group. Their faces are not very intelligent, nice and inspired; they look full of fake importance of themselves. The beggars and very poor people shown on the left are excluded from the procession somehow. Probably according to the social grade they have to be at the very end of the festive walk or not to be there at all. But they are there and the way they look give us a thought that faith is the only hope they have.  This type of social criticism was one of the main tendencies in Russian culture during the second part of 19th century. 
Playfulness of this rococo painting starts from it’s title. The question “”Are They Thinking about the Grape? ” sounds intriguing and coquettish. The subject is informal. A Couple  of shepherd and shepherdesse in love feeding each other with grapes is depicted with a sense of sensuality, tenderness and attachment. Their poses are relaxed and open. Even the drapery of their clothes looks elegant, the fabrics seem to be soft. All the lines are smooth. The trees are very sketchy, we cannot see the borders of the leaves.  Pastel and warm colors shape light-hearted and romantic mood. The painting is calm and delicate, there is even more of renaissance balance and quietness than of baroque drama and motion. The painting is not centered and it’s not symmetrical, but there are some diagonals. The main idea of the image is love, feast and joy. This work of François Boucher is made in the manner of  Jean-Antoine Watteau's images of fête galantes. 
Jean-Antoine Watteau exemplifies the qualities of Rococo art in The Country Dance.  This work is Watteau’s earliest known painting done about 1706-1710.  It is playful, light, and informal.  The lines are elegant and the curves are gentle.  The Country Dance depicts a group dancing, playing instruments and enjoying themselves. The characters are happy and having fun.  It is an ideal view of life in the country.  It demonstrated the beauty and simplicity of rural life.  Many French novels and plays focusing on these qualities of country life became quite popular during the 18th century.  Pastel colors are used, especially in the landscape background trees and sky creating a vapor like quality.  The brush strokes are noticeable and loose.  There is a sketchy quality to this piece.
Capet was a student of Adelaide Labille-Guiard. Like her teacher, Capet is a master of finish. The textures are clearly distinct and realistic. Also like her teacher, she paints herself in front of an easel, while dressed in an elegant blue satin dress--hardly work attire. While the finish to the materials is realistic, there is nonetheless a lightness to the work that speaks to the Rococo period. There is that light blue satin bow in her hair that matches the pastel blue of her dress. There is a definite attention to her porcelain flesh and a sensuality conveyed not only through the open chest, but the way her hair falls around her neck and over her shoulder. While surfaces and textures seem so real, that awkward lack of realism in anatomical accuracy is apparent in her hand. It seems almost like a baby’s hand on a young woman’s body. The crispness of line and precision of textures are amazing, but there is also a softness and lightness to her expression. It is both realistic and idealistic, like 18th century France. 
This statue "Three Graces" by Antonio Canova is a brilliant example of the Neoclassical period with the subject from Antiquity. The artist embodied his own perception of the beauty in the form of these three ancient goddesses.This work was praised for its new approach to the subject. Unlike the compositions from the Classical Antiquity, Canova's figures stand side by side, facing each other but not the viewer! It looks like the figures are talking to each other.They complement one another in their poses and gazes. The goddesses merged into embrace and they are not united only by the entwined arm but also buy a narrow draping scarf. This statue is very well balanced, compact, visually idealizes and full of grace. The figures have perfect, smooth skin, very typical for the Neoclassicism. It gives you a feeling of polish. The statue illustrates Canova's outstanding ability to transform marble into soft lustrous skin. Tis work is located in The state hermitage museum in St Petersburg.
 I picked this work because I think it sums up beautifully the Rococo style  that Fragonard was famed for.  It also makes me smile which I think is also a common feature of Rococo pieces as they are generally light-hearted and playful in subject matter and far less formal than earlier periods.    In this piece, the artist is portraying the game of blind man's buff as the folly of marriage ie taking your chances on meeting a partner.  Although in this instance, there is only one couple playing the game so the outcome is a foregone conclusion!  Likewise, you can see that the girl has her eyes open and can see out from underneath her blindfold adding to the fun element of the work as she is in control of the situation despite the man thinking he is.  Also in the scene, you can see the infants being portrayed as classical cupids or puttos to distract the girl by tickling her face with straw while the man who is chasing her taps her arm.  The piece has also been described as erotic and sensual given the nature of the scene with the enclosed garden being said to symbolise virginity and the fact that the girl is being seduced and has very blushing cheeks and a playful stance.  In addition to the above, the factors which point to this being a Rococo work are the fact it is set in a pastoral landscape with very detailed trees and plants and a very light, vapourish sky with the tree framing the picture.  There are nods in the painting to Fragonard's master, Boucher, such as the great detail and ornamentation in the roses are trees. In addition, the palette used contains some pastel colours and also some deep blues and pinks.  The author uses fluid and feathery brushstrokes too which gives the painting a sense of lightness. 
I like the picture a lot because it aroused a great dramatic feeling and showed brilliant use of light and dark, diagonal compositions, openness that is prevalent in the Baroque period. This is one of the rare mythological subjects that Rembrandt painted during his whole life. In this picture, he shows a narrative story through dramatic gestures and visual effects. A story told by ancient Roman poet Ovid says that god Jupiter disguised himself as a white bull to seduce the princess Europa away from her companions and carry her across the sea to the distant land. In the picture we see that Europa grasps the bull's horn, digs her fingers into his neck, and looks back at her companions. One young woman falls to the ground and raises her arms, while the girl next to her clasps her hands in consternation and looks helplessly. The carriage driver above rises to his feet and stares at the departing princess in horror. The background shows thick mist. The dark trees on the right shows a strong contrast with the sky and water. We see Rembrandt’s sensitivity towards light and dark: the sun shines and reflects on the water, the reflections of the figures on the bank, all of which creates a strong sense of unity and drama in the frame. Also, the strong diagonals create a sense of openness. On the right of the picture, we see figures in the darkness and are cut off but not restrained in the frame, the bull running towards the left and seems to be moving out of the frame the next second; all of these leave openness and imagination towards stories outside the frame.  The picture really creates a visual excitement for viewers. 
Charles Mellin, a French painter in the Baroque era spent his artistic career in Italy.  This portraiture is possibly of the Tuscan General Alessandro Del Borro, a no doubt wealthy patron, who commissioned his portrait. The Baroque influence is clearly evident in the powerful, self-assured stance of the figure. A tall, solid stone column and cane, both expressions of power and wealth in the Baroque period, flank his massive frame.  Light and dark contrast is used to highlight and create shadows resulting in a 3 dimensional effect.  The richness of material and drapery are emphasized by the elegant detail of the “fleur de Lys” pattern on his garments.Southern high Renaissance influence is also evident in the rational use of space, and full realistic form of the Gentleman. His expression is enigmatic and hard to read. A flag lies crumpled at his feet perhaps signifying his sense of power and superiority over others.
This monumental altarpiece, painted by Federico Barocci in 1579, was acquired by Grand Duke Pietro Leopoldo in 1786 for the Chapel of the lay brothers of Arezzo in the church of Santa Maria della Pieve. It has a whirling composition, and natural quality which is enlivened by bright colors and strong lighting. Figures such as the crippled man, the blind man and the woman with children are references to the Seven Works of Mercy of the Madonna who in this painting presents herself to her son also as a lawyer for the people. Here Barocci anticipates the spectacular effects of Baroque art; in fact, among his young admirers, besides the Tuscan painters, there was also Rubens.
Albert Durer is one of the brightest artists of Northern Renaissance – the master of the painting, drawing and engraving. There are about 1000 Durer drawings we have in museums and private collections. Albert Durer is first art theorist of Northern Renaissance.  The reason why I have chosen “Mary among a Multitude of Animals” for the Project this week is that is this drawing we can see both – the Italian and Northern influence. Here we can see Italian idealism in the way Mary and a Child depicted, the face and body features are very similar to the way that Italian masters used in their paintings. On the other hand we can see that every aspect of the image is fully articulated and this is very special to Northern Renaissance. 
I chose this piece of work by Antonio is mainly because this piece fully demonstrates his ability to "manipulate light and shade to create luminous atmospheric effects, which resulted in some of the most sumptuous religious paintings of the Italian Renaissance".  Antonio Correggio was profoundly influenced by the style and technique used by the painter Andrea Mantegna.  Using a narrow upright format, Correggio focuses the passionate encounter on the view of the delicate nude back, placing it in a setting that is warm and humid. With great elegance he depicts the erotic union of the god with Io, the mortal daughter of the river god Inachus: Jupiter’s face shimmers softly through the grey fog as he kisses Io, while his hand gently grasps her waist; the supposed victim seems to have abandoned any thought of escape. The deer drinking in the bottom right corner gives the erotic motif a trace of Christian decorum: “As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God.”Correggio’s ability to combine a mystical depiction of nature with the classical figural ideal and the expression of sublime emotion differentiated him from other artists from earlier ages. 
 One of the fore most painters of his time, Rembrant uses the qualities and defining characteristics of Baroque art to create this masterpiece. In this highly religious painting Rembrant plays with light and uses a sombre palette to create a dramatic effect – where Christ’s hand and face are bathed in a shimmering spiritual light to create the effect required.PAINTERLY – Figures here fused together and light is used to create this sense. One figures is almost lost to the shadows and there are no clear lines outlining any one figure.SPATIAL RECESSION - People and objects are placed at various levels and depths with no real symmetry – the cluster of people to the left of center receding into the background and create a diagonal sweep upward to the hand that is raising the dead. The impact of the gesture clearly evident.OPEN FORMS – Fifures not in any vertical or horizontal order and move well into the depths of the painting – and spill out of it to giving a sense of the scene escaping off the canvas. The composition is dynamic and has movement – and is not constricted within the frame.UNITY – the scene plays out as a composite whole – with the figures overlapping and lit in a manner where the picture works as a unified scene with no real emphasis on individual elements as distinctive.RELATIVE CLARITY – lighting and composition work to creating an atmosphere and visual where there are shadows and contours that do not project a sense of absolute clarity.  Strong unidirectional lighting that plays on the diagonal placement of the painting’s subjects creates a blend of lights and darks that produce a clarity that is relative.
What attracted me to this image is the broad range of oil techniques used. The variety of painting styles is new to the paintings studied thus far. We are beginning to see artistic liberty used to distinguish the narrative or focal point. The use of light is very important in the Baroque practice as we see in this image. The light framing the figure's face and neck, highlights her presence. But here Rembrandt explores the use of paint, applying detail and tight strokes to areas of prominence such as the facial features. Rembrandt's draws attention to the lightest areas with small pinpoints of highlights on the hat embroidery and flower petals. These highlights are not true to the light source and are a liberty taken by the artist to create points of importance. Possibly the flower was used to show her femininity which is echoed by the embroidery patterning of the hat which is usually in a floral arrangement. The hair or fur under her arm is not explained but is present for a symbolic purpose unclear to the viewer. The technique is loose and brushy, providing a point of comparison to the face. The background is not rendered to fruition but is conducted in a style of tenerbrism -  which is loosely brushy. Only what is important is rendered to perfection.  A scale of hierarchy is evidenced through brushstrokes. 
This work has been done by the Dutch painter Gheritt van Hontorst in Italy from around 1610-1622. It is one of his most famous works. He was very well known for his skill with the play of light in his paintings and was also known as 'Gherado of the Nights' for this.                                                                                                                                                  We do know that the artists in the Baroque period were known for their play with light. Drama and high emotions in imagery were one of the main characteristics of Baroque paintings and a lot of this was done through the manipulation of light in the image. Hontorst shows his skill extremely well in this work. There is a bright almost shining light arising from and illuminating the baby's body in this painting. Mary is depicted showing the child to the angels. The use of light has created very dramatic and exceptional imagery. The light shines right onto the faces of the angels and their expressions are clearly visible- those of adoration and immense love. The emotions on their face seem to radiate through the body and this is seen with their movement of the hands and their very realistic and dramatic facial expressions. The skill with which the artist has worked with the light is quite remarkable. He has used it to also show how the people in the image are placed. The man in background, who I think could be Joseph, is shown darker because he is further back from the rest and this play with light brings about the perspective to the viewer.As we can see clearly in this image, the Baroque period saw some very skilled artists and the use of dramatic lighting and dramatic emotions could leave a viewer completely mesmerized. This painting was found in the Medici family's collection.
Annibal Carracci was born in Bologna, and most likely painted Christ and the Samaritan Woman in Rome.  In this painting, Carracci demonstrates many differences between the Renaissance and the Baroque period.  There is a great sense of emotion in Christ’s face as he looks at the Samaritan woman.  His eyes express a huge amount of emotion.  He uses strong sweeping diagonal lines.  The figures are off center as opposed to Renaissance figures which are centered.  It is painterly.  Light highlights the faces and arms of the central figures.  Both Christ and the Samaritan are robust.  The width of the Samaritan woman and her overall size is not ladylike.  Carracci is known for unrealistically muscular figures.  This can be seen in the calf of a man in the background.  There a lacking sense of delicacy as seen during the renaissance.  This painting has an open forum.  It appears to be cut off on both sides.  The figures in the background are looking towards the upper right hand corner, but because the sides have the appearance of being cut off, the viewer does not know what they are looking at.  This inspires curiosity for me. 
The Renaissance was the rebirth of man's life on earth. Man, in the Renaissance view, was regarded as rational, beautiful, heroic, and capable of great achievement. Man's mind was viewed as able to understand the universe.Michelangelo's David is the best expression of this Renaissance sense of life. Michelangelo unlike his predecessors who depicted David after his victory over Goliath chose to show David at that point in time that prefigured victory: in that moment when an individual makes a choice and commits to act on that choice. Michelangelo shows David not as a triumphant victor, but as a thinking, resolute being.In this sketch produced over five years after David Michelangelo continued to refine the form. Where David was young, beautiful, slim and composed, in this sketch we see a young man whose massive body is seated in a fairly unnatural pose but in imposing and forceful action, his body anatomy exaggerates musculature in every detail. His body and hands are lifelike. The medium of red chalk emphasises the massiveness of the body and we are able to feel its weight. Though his head and facial features are depicted in much less details than his body anatomy, the work is emotionally expressive, appealing and inviting. The effect of this sketch reflects the artistic developments of the High Renaissance style when the artists were preoccupied with the human anatomy.
During the Late Renaissance - Early Baroque Period, the pendant went to replace the Medieval brooch as being the most common jewel and was worn as a necklace, on a long gold chain. Pendants were then often designed featuring the bejeweled initials of the wearer - or his or her loved one - and are often encountered to be seen from both sides with enameled backs.Indeed a new enamel technique was indeed invented by the beginning of the 17th century that became highly prized: that of email en resille.However the most significant change in Jewellery is that the influx of gemstones into Europe was greater than ever. Vasco Da Gama had found a direct sea route to India over the years 1497-1499 and this route allowed European merchants to start obtaining gems in India directly. The Persian Gulf also became a strong supplier of pearls and from portraits it becomes clear that wearing pearls became extremely popular in those days.This pendant also represents the few new decorative styles that emerged as well during this time.  Designs by the arrangement of gemstones and with arabesques started to dominate : the Renaissance had started to give way to the Baroque.
This painting, which evidently references Titian, is an excellent study of Baroque painting. The exaggerated musculature  of Cupid is impossible to miss. The size of Venus, particularly her arms and knees and shoulders, are recognizable as this era’s depiction of women. The contrasts of light and dark, especially the dark background (and subtly lit) also marks this Baroque period. The use of light, especially as it is reflected on and from the mirror showing not even one side of Venus’ face, is another hallmark. The luminosity of Venus and Cupid against the very dark background is engaging and keeps the attention on the subject. Coupled with this drama of light and dark is the exquisite attention to  natural detail in the hair  (and wings) and fur collar and gold trim on Venus’ robe. She has wavy hair and a plait, and wears a ring on her pinky and pearls on her other wrist. The table upon which Cupid is standing to hold the mirror for Venus, is intricately carved with a different tone of wood on the top. His case for his arrows is embossed and the tips are silver. The use of light and technique to show different materials and surfaces is incredible. The elegance and wealth (and vanity) that is typically shown in paintings of this era is perfectly displayed here. The depth of color also conveys a sense of richness. It is interesting to me that Cupid looks as though the mirror is quite heavy. He is leaning back and using his knees and muscles to support him to hold up the mirror. There are diagonals in her drapery and in Cupids bow and arrow as well as his position. 
I chose this work as I think it shows some of key features that we associate with Caravaggio's work and the Baroque period generally.  The painting is of the young Cupid and is depicting the phrase that "love conquers all" and triumphs over science, art, fame and power, the symbols of which are all strewn at Cupid's feet.     The features which are typical of the Baroque period are that Cupid is slightly off centre in his pose, the painting is not symmetrical and he shows emotion on his face as he appears to be laughing/flushed and is also in motion rather than being still. There is a strong sense of realism in the figure too as the muscles are very well defined. Cupid's leg position uses a strong diagonal line which is also a key feature of Baroque painting and is also somewhat erotic given he is naked and reclining in such a pose.  The key features of Caravggio which are evident in the painting are the tenebrism which means the dramatic illumination where light and darkness become a dominating feature of the image.  This is seen clearly in the illumination of Cupid's body, some of which is in bright light and some of which is in shade, causing it to regress into the background.  Caravaggio is generally credited with inventing the style and it can be seen in many of his works.  The chiaroscuro style is also clearly articulated in the painting as Caravaggio's clever use of light and dark affects the whole composition of the piece and gives a sense of volume and a three dimensional form to Cupid.
This is an excellent painting Martyrdom of St Lawrence by Spanish born artist, Jusepe de Ribera. He was  one of the most important artists in European painting of the Baroque style. In this painting Ribera used his blending of various techniques of different artists like Caravaggio, Guido Reni, Correggio. The artist depicts the moment when St Lawrence accepted his fate and  his face shows that he is already in the dialogue with God. This painting is full of drama and power, so characteristic for the Baroque period.There is a vivid use of light and color and its Caravaggesque naturalism and realism. The painter managed to convey the most sensitive moment of the martyrdom. The tortured figure of St Lawrence, highlighted by a beam of light is the focus of the whole composition. The artist captured the most dramatic minutes before the martyrdom itself, he didn't concentrate on depicting the horror. The executioners don't look at us, their faces betray mo cruelty as well. The artist uses foreshortenings and diagonals in such a way that form serves expression and gives a strong sense of unity.
One of my favorite painters of the High Renaissance is “El Greco”. Born in Crete, but considered one of the greatest artists of the Spanish Renaissance. He moved to Toledo, Spain at age 36 where he lived and produced his most renowned masterpieces. He was a successful painter, architect and sculptor. His contemporaries did not appreciate el Greco’s work of art, but he was of great influence to artists of the twentieth century. Expressionists like Eugene Delacroix and Edouard Manet were inspired by his paintings. Cubists like Pablo Picasso and Paul Cezanne followed El Greco’s techniques as well.The main characteristics of El Greco’s paintings were exaggerated and elongated figures and greyish, “phantasmagorical” pigmentation.“Saint Peter in Tears” is, to me, one of El Greco’s most expressive paints. When we look at the painting we can perceive the sadness the artist wanted to convey when he painted this portrait. Saint Peter’s swollen eyes and tears, after having denied Christ for the third time, denote his guiltiness. The Saint is desperately looking to heaven as if looking for forgiveness.With this piece of art, El Greco wanted to convey an important message: that is that everyone can commit sins at a certain point in life, but with profound faith and truthful repent people could become son’s of God. Peter was weak at a certain point in his life, but after he repented he became a saint and the first pope of the Catholic Church.
This is a northern renaissance painting executed in oil. The oil technique makes the colours look more vivid, bright and gives the whole image the sense of depth. We can see that the painting has many details on it. The pattern on the cloth is very realistic, the crown of the king is luxuriously decorated with precious stones, we even can recognise the brilliance of the stones. The artist managed to show an architecture of the town and the citizens who are on the painting but they are not engaged in the main action. The treatment of drapery is very realistic like it was in Gothic period. But still we can define the painting to be northern renaissance as the style of drapery is angular. To make the narrative of the painting more wide the artists added some symbols. Thus purple and blue irises could signify seven sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The sheep flock could be interpreted as Holy lamb and sacrifice that Jesus would make. Almost everybody on the painting are looking on Christ and in their faces the feeling of intense worship is legible. But the Child is looking on the views, it means a lot, as this painting was indented  for church. And looking on Mary and Christ we can feel the sense of divine luminosity but at the same time the sense of inevitable sorrow – Christ’s death. It feels like Mary and Christ already know their purpose in life and the looks very calm a little bit remote and spiritual. 
The Magi, or wise men, were particularly respected in Florence. Sandro Botticelli, one of the most prominent Florentine painters, have painted many versions of it. Botticelli emphasized on the religious aspect of the scene, where figures express strong piety, the postures of their hands and bodies reveal devotion. I quite like this painting because first, upon first glance, there is a strong sense of action and emotion of the figures, making the work incredibly vivid. Also, the features and techniques of the Southern Renaissance are prominently and lively adopted. First, we can see the linear perspective based on a very regular mathematical system, the columns all pointing to a single point, the characters all directing to the centre point of Saint Mary. There is also the atmosphere perspective as we see the colors become less intensive, details become more subdued as viewers look further in the scene. As for the figures, they are anatomically correct and idealized, being more generic rather than specific as well. There is also a strong sense of symmetry and balance within the structure of the scene, all of which make the work a perfect demonstration of the Italian Renaissance. 
This painting depicted the story that two of Christ's disciples, while on their way to Emmaus, met the resurrected Christ and failed to recognize him. The basic composition conformed to the characteristics of Renaissance period. For example, all the lines and movements pointed to the central point of Christ's place, which was known as single point prospective. The atmosphere prospective was also applied as the clouds in the window tended to be blue fading away which enlarged the virtual space and created a sense of calm. Humanism and naturalism were also seen in the ways the figures were painted. They appeared in vivid and alive forms as natural observed rather than in rigid forms as in the Medieval period. The use of colors was also another point needed to note, setting in black background, the bright color of Christ's clothes drawn audience's attention and focus to him. 
This is another interesting painting during Renaissance period. Like many other paintings produced during the same period, Hans tried to create a 3D effect by using linear perspective in the tiles on walls and different light effects.Story in the painting is that - "as opposed to the later interpretation, according to which Mary was lifted into the heavens, body and soul, here, in compliance with the apocryphal writings and legends of the Middle Ages, the death of the Mother of God is depicted as a gentle dormition. Holbein's young, fair Mary lies in bed, almost enthroned among the Twelve Apostles, who, according to legend, upon her prayer, miraculously gathered from all quarters of the world, to be at her side in her final hour. The apostle John, to whom Christ on the Cross entrusted his mother, puts a candle into Mary's hand - the symbol of a peaceful death. The prince of the apostles, Peter, dressed in a chasuble, leads the funeral ceremony. In the clouds between the two angels swinging incense burners, Christ appears in an aureole to take his mother's soul, represented as a young girl, with him."
Saint Francis of Assisi is the first person to have experienced stigmata in Christian History.  The story tells that while on a fasting journey on Mount La Verna, the later proclaimed Saint had an apparition of a six-winged angel.  This divine creature appeared crucified like Jesus Christ.  When the angel disappeared, Francis was left with the exact same wounds Jesus suffered during crucifixion.   His hands and feet had deep bleeding cuts as if nails had pierced him.  On the side of his body, on his ribs, a wound caused by a spear appeared as if he had been struck like Jesus Christ.The Renaissance painting “Saint Francis of Assisi Receiving the Stigmata” by artist Jan Van Eyck is oil on panel from the fifteen century.  Van Eyck mainly used earthly tones and colors to harmonize the garments worn by the Saint and  “Brother Leo” with the simplicity of the landscape (in this case Mount La Verna, a quiet and secluded place where both devoted men went to pray).  We can see that Jan Van Eyck has used for his composition several traits that are characteristic of the Northern Renaissance Period.  Among them we can cite the following: the drapery used on both men has an angular style, light that comes from the left illuminates the painting, that can be said to have brown as a predominant color, and the head of Saint Francis has an ovoid shape.Saint Francis of Assisi lived like the poor and he preached humility everywhere he went.  In Van Eyck’s painting we can see that he is barefoot, a symbol of holiness and humility during the Renaissance Period.  Even though his bleeding feet are long, his hands are small with elongated fingers, another characteristic of the period.Finally we can see that this masterpiece has an intuitive perspective in which both Saint Francis and Brother Leo seem very big as the central figures, but the images from the background like the town or the angel look very small creating an illusion of depth. 
This Altarpiece of St Lucia de'Magnoli was painted between 1445-1447 by Domenico Veneziano. It is a very expressive example of the Italian Renaissance art. It shows the Virgin and the Child enthroned with Saint Francis, John the Baptist, Saint Zenobius and Saint Lucy. It is clearly painted with the use of linear perspective to create the illusion of depth and with the slight touch of atmospheric perspective, we can see the blue sky through the opening. In the background there are also three orange trees depicted against the blue sky. Behind the Virgin's head there is a beam of light which reinforces the colors and creates the vibrancy to light tones of the color. Colors are very soft and nice. It is really brilliantly colored and richly decorated. We can see a lot of minor details, like decoration with gems and beads  in the outfit of Saint Zenobius, on the neckline of the Virgin's dress. The representation of the Virgin Mary here characterizes the artist's style in the pure, simple and clear form of her head and the gentle refinement of her features, the softly cascading drapery. The expression of the eyes of the Virgin and of the Child is almost the same which conveys the connectivity, between these two. Each character of this scene has a vivid expression of the face.There is a sense of humanism and individualism in this painting. The whole scene breathes with calm and balance. The nature is presented with almost scientific accuracy. It is about order and symmetry as in every piece of Renaissance work.While some elements of the painting can be seen as symbolic,for example the oranges in the windows, symbol of Medici"s family, this painting can be simply appreciated for its sparkling color and delightful details.
I chose this piece as it is a good example of some of the styles which were typical in the Northern Renaissance.  This oil painting portrays the Virgin sitting on a throne with the baby Jesus in her lap in what is presumed to be a small chapel.  Perhaps more unusually for Northern Renaissance art where you might expect to see the use of intuitive perspective, the painter uses linear perspective in the walls and also floor tiles and carpet which very much helps us focus on the centre of the painting, the Madonna and creates a sense of depth to the room.  It makes the viewed feel like they are also in the room.  There are other features which are more typical of Northern Renaissance for example, minute and clever details which are portrayed such the intricate detail of the embroidery and jewels on her robes together with the clever use of light on the robes which give them angular folds and a sense of sumptuous texture.  The details of her hair and face and also very clear and soft.  Also note the detailed patterns on the floor tiles and rug.  The way the painter has painted the window is also interesting and shows great technical proficiency as it gives a real sense of light coming through it and also of the shadows outside.  Likewise, the bowl of water on the alcove shelf is also cleverly painted showing the reflection of light coming through the window and a sense of depth.  The fact that the window is mirrored in shape and style by the alcove opposite it is also typical of Renaissance style which is often symmetrical and ordered giving a sense of calmness and balance to the painting overall. The oil also allows for deep, rich colours to be portrayed which adds to the overall luminosity of the painting and sumptuous scene.
This "Study of Two Feet" is exactly that. I am fascinated by the incredible attention to not only anatomical authenticity, but to the fine details of the skin of the back of the foot. Although this is a drawing,a study for a larger work that included the feet of the apostle Paul as he was kneeling , I find the detail mezmerizing. Even in this drawing there is depth provided by shading and the white highlights. While Durer may have traveled through the Netherlands and Northern Italy and was influenced by Michaelangelo and Leonardo Da Vinci, I am fascinated by the perspective of the soles of the feet. To me, showing a different position (even a fraction of Paul kneeling), and seeing him from behind bearing the soles of his feet toward the viewer seems innovative. It's complexity is further revealed in the position of the left foot with respect to the right foot. It is turned slightly, revealing the arch and the side view of the top of the foot--as though it is dynamic rather than statically posed. The shading over the right foot shows the hem of the robe. This "Study of Two Feet" is fascinating to me because Renaissance art seems so studious. With the shift towards humanism and intellectual development, Renaissance art emphasizes observation and interest in the natural world, as well as a sense of dimension. To me, even though this is not a painting, the " Study of Two Feet" epitomizes the intellectual and artistic innovations of the Renaissance.
Giovanni Bellini is an Italian Renaissance painter, hence part of the Southern movement.  He was born and worked in Venice.  He comes from a family of painters. I chose the painting for multiple reasons.  First, I find it interesting and beautiful in so many ways but also because it is located in the Frick which is in New York City where I live.  I am hoping to be able to see it as I think I will be able to learn and understand it better if I can view it. After viewing many of his paintings, eventually choosing this one, I noticed that he is talented not only in painting outdoor scenes but he is also excellent at portraiture.  On this piece Bellini used oil and tempera on poplar panel. Atmospheric perspective is used in this painting.  The dimensionality of it is amazing.  The use of light and colors appear more vibrant in the front of the painting.  The rocks in the front appear to have light shining on them.  The details diminish toward the back of the painting.  The back of the painting depicts a blue sky.  I know that it’s common for the colors to fade as we go back and I see this in the castle toward the back, but the sky behind it does not appear dull to me.  The color is not faded and it appears lit.  I wonder why that is.  From what I understand, that is not conventional in this movement.  The painting appears to have a single point perspective which I think is St. Frances.  Single point perspective as well as atmospheric perspective, are two techniques used in the Southern Renaissance movement.  Realism and humanism are common in this movement.  I see this in the animals, buildings, St. Francis,  and most of the scenery in this painting which is plentiful.  However, the tree in this painting looks somewhat unnatural.  Its angle and the appearance of it being blown are not appropriate with the otherwise still and calm features of this landscape.  There are other objects that would show movement if the tree was being blown by wind.  Looking at this image, I cannot tell if fresco was used.  Perhaps if I could see it up close I would notice the lines indicating fresco.  My guess is that it is fresco, due to the time that this was painted, and the materials used. I know that many of the objects in this picture have symbolic significance.  The one that I have a good guess on is the skull which is on the desk.  To me, this symbolizes death.  St Frances has his chest up and is leaning back a bit and has his arms open.  It appears to me as if he is waiting to receive something, but I don’t have a guess as to what it is.  This painting is so rich with symbolism and technique that I feel as if I have barely scratched the surface.  I plan on visiting it as soon as possible and learning more about it.  If anyone can steer me in a direction or towards literature that can help me understand this piece better, I would greatly appreciate it. 
This painting has been done by the Sienese artist Ambrogio Lorenzetti. The panel was originally from the Rofeno Church. Ambrogio was a pioneer of Sienese painting and was very much the reason for its development in the 14th century. He helped shift from the traditional approach to the more Gothic approach. We know that Sienna was one of the main contenders against Florence as the biggest centre for art during this period. In this panel we can see a few figures/prominent people: Michael the archangel, Saints Bartholomew & Benedict, Saints John the Evangelist & Ludwig of Tolouse and Mary and Christ right on top. We can see that there is definitely a Gothic art approach that has been followed. The gold background with tooled and impressed work, the material is Tempera on panel and Tempera was a very commonly used medium in those times, we can clearly see that decoration is a key element in this panel. Colours are vibrant and vivid. This was the main style used in the Gothic period.                                                                                    We also see that the faces, especially of Mary and the Archangel are not very realistic. They have a more calm, composed and serene look, even though Michael the archangel is slaying the dragon described in the Apocalypse. His positing and stance is that of struggle or action but not his facial expression. Furthermore, we can notice the realistic drapery on the saints. This is different from the drapery of the more Byzantine style. This drapery shows more realism and the fact that the figure is grounded in a way. According to me the drapery is more realistic also because we don't see the Byzantine influence of the gold highlights in it. Christ as well, is shown in a slightly more adult look, even though he is a baby. The proportions of this piece are also a clear indicative of the Gothic period. The panel is 7.5 feet x 8 feet approximately, and the shapes used in its structure also indicate and show similarity to those used in the Gothic architecture. For example: The pointed arches, the peaked top resembles the lanterns of the cathedrals and churches of the Gothic period. This piece was later considered a model by many successive painters of the time. 
Saint Michael as an archangel Michael is known in different religious. He is a healing angel, stands to protect children and defeat evil.Veronese worked in Venice during the sixteenth century. Along with Titian and Tintoretto, Veronese was one of the most celebrated artists of the time. He worked for the elite, the Church and the State, in frescoes and oils. He captured the elegance of contemporary Venetian life, which is seen in portraits and altarpieces.The manner of the portrait is in line with the Italian Renaissance style. The portrait present a young man who is deep in his thoughts. His facial expression, hair and clothing are presented in high details and in a realistic setting. There is no clutter of ornamentation, no art for the arts sake, only strong brush strokes to convey the sense of calmness and melancholy. Though an angel, a man is presented as a human, which demonstrates the return to antiquity of Greek and Roman Art. On the altarpiece Saint Michael plays an important role. His pose and lowered head convey his role - he will be weighing the souls of the dead on the Judgement Day. Veronese who had strong ties to the religion in this portrait captured the hope for redemption.
This gold ring is decorated with polychrome enamels in geometrical patterns and by four half pearls at the top of the setting.Enamel is a technique that was developed since the Egyptian Antiquity and were applied on stone or metal objects, pottery and sometimes jewellery. In jewelry, its bright and jewel-like colors made enamel widely used and a favored choice for jewelry artists during the Renaissance where this piece belongs to, and it became highly prized and at its peak within the Art Nouveau period, especially with such designers as Faberge and his famous eggs.However, the real specificity of this ring is that it is what we call a “Poison Ring”, which is quite a fascinating and sulfurous ring since it holds a container inside its bezel that could be used to hold poison and slip it into an enemy's food or drink, or to facilitate the suicide of the wearer in order to escape capture or torture.Poison Rings began to appear in Europe during the sixteenth century and eventually have been also used throughout history to carry perfume, locks of hair, devotional relics, messages or even tiny portraits of loved ones, which made them extremely popular during the Renaissance.
"Madonna at the Church" is an early piece of the Flemish artist Jan van Eyck and it was created around 1438. It shows Virgin Mary as a Queen of Heaven holding a child at the church. This masterpiece belongs to the Northern Renaissance and here we can observe a lot of attention to lively and natural details like architectural characteristics of the Gothic church with all the little moldings depicting the life of Mary, candle lights by the statue of a Virgin carrying the child and even the little cracks on the walls. Natural day light of this perfect Gothic church penetrates the piece and brings the sense of celestial illumination to the whole scene as if the picture shines from within. Light gives the brightness and plays with a colors of the blue cape and the red dress of Mary, sparkles in the Mary's crown and angel's dresses whom we can see at the perspective. 
I chose this painted panel by Jean Fouquet because in 1437 he was one of the first artists to travel to Italy to learn from the early Italian Renaissance painters. We can clearly see both Northern and Southern Renaissance influences in this work.Etienne Chevalier is kneeling in the foreground accompanied by his Patron Saint, St Stephen. Southern influences are evident in the sense of repose and calmness of the two men. Linear perspective is used for the background church like stonewalls and flooring giving a 3 dimensional effect. Atmospheric perspective can be seen in the slightly softened wall and flooring colors giving depth to the room.Northern influences are in the intricate and realistic detailing of the faces and hands.  St Stephan’s face and the elongated, praying hands of Etienne Chevalier appear almost luminous which may signify heavenly light.  The stone on the book (could be bible?) signifies the stoning of the Saint in which he met his death.  Blood is dripping down the cap of St Stephens also signifying his martyrdom.  This right hand panel of a diptych shows the 2 men looking at the left hand panel depicting the Virgin and child surrounded by angels. Unfortunately the 2 panels are separated, Etienne Chevalier with St Stephen in the Gemaldegalerie, Berlin and the Virgin and Child in the Antwerp Museum, Belgium.
This is a beautiful example of Northern Renaissance art at the beginning of the practice of portraiture.  The oil on wood portraiture by Antonio del Pollaiuolo shows numerous conventions of the Renaissance period.  The side profile format seen here is typical of the period and shows clearly the modelling of the curve of the face representing the truth and humanism of the Renaissance period. The paleness of skin seen in the face is similar to Jan van Eyck's, portrait of Govanni Arnolfini and Wife.  Giovanna Cenam is not insinuating mortality but rather youth and innocence through the pink shading. The hair bound tightly, shows little squares which could be indicative of a braid or headpiece but it is unclear if this references the classicist use of geometry. The blue sky is present in the background with no indication of persecutive which is rare in this Renaissance period was it was seen as a monumental shift for this time. What is very present in the portrait is the focus on patterning in the dress which often has a Gothic reference. In this case it may be indicative to the woman's Scottish heritage as the thistle, emblematic of Scotland,  is present on her chest. If one looks close enough you can see quilting on the red fabric spotted with gold at each cross. What must be recognized in relation to Renaissance convention is the mastery of tight brushwork and detail.  The bottom of the painting depicts what could be a replica of a frame. The detail of each jewel and minute detail is mastered in every stroke.  
This is another interesting painting during Renaissance period. Like many other paintings produced during the same period, Hans tried to create a 3D effect by using linear perspective in the tiles on walls and different light effects.Story in the painting is that - "as opposed to the later interpretation, according to which Mary was lifted into the heavens, body and soul, here, in compliance with the apocryphal writings and legends of the Middle Ages, the death of the Mother of God is depicted as a gentle dormition. Holbein's young, fair Mary lies in bed, almost enthroned among the Twelve Apostles, who, according to legend, upon her prayer, miraculously gathered from all quarters of the world, to be at her side in her final hour. The apostle John, to whom Christ on the Cross entrusted his mother, puts a candle into Mary's hand - the symbol of a peaceful death. The prince of the apostles, Peter, dressed in a chasuble, leads the funeral ceremony. In the clouds between the two angels swinging incense burners, Christ appears in an aureole to take his mother's soul, represented as a young girl, with him."
Of this marble statue only the torso is original; the head, arms, legs, rock and plinth were added by the sculptor Emil Wolff, after an early Augustan bronze figure in the Palazzo dei Conservatori in Rome. This so-called 'Spinario' was apparently never lost. It is mentioned as early as the twelfth century, and from the Renaissance on it attracted great praise, and was frequently drawn and copied. It represents a boy sitting on a rock with his left foot on his right upper thigh. He is bent forward, intent on pulling a thorn from the sole of his foot with his right thumb and forefinger. The composition draws the gaze toward the hand and the injured foot. Though the youth's posture is very natural, the long hair here, as in the earlier bronze copy, does not hang down loosely but is artfully arranged: for the head with its classical profile did not belong to this boy's body. The Roman copyist had grafted onto the Hellenistic figure the head of a standing boy from a Greek original of around 460 BCE - a stylistic disjuncture often found in Roman copies of Greek statues.
Reliquary Tabernacle with the Virgin and Child     ca.1350This panel painting depicted the Virgin embracing Child, the solemn scene with the gilded architecture conveys a strong feeling of holiness. The gold- leaf -covered frame indicated the chapel was filled with the light from the heaven, the spire of the church was deemed a path to paradise. In addition, the golden background which was wildly used in Medieval art also imply the belief in supernatural, the glory of Christ. All these features possessed religious meaning.The proportion of the Virgin and Child is not necessarily realistic, yet, the fluid cloth fold did follow the Roman convention. The subtle geometric pattern carved in the background made the Virgin and Child tridimensional and thus more approachable for pilgrims. The intensive color contrast mainly presented via the robe in the object was also very common in Medieval art. This tabernacle reflected one of the most significant artistic attributes of Christian art,that is art was adopted to explain the Bible story, contributing to better veneration for the religion rather than the pursuit of beauty.
The janiform herm depicting the heads of Bacchus and Ariadne. The title sounds very strange (Hebrew?) but I can guess that it was named after the place where it was excavated (is it correct?).  We can recognize Bacchus by the fillet decorated with bunches of grapes hanging behind two frontal clusters of berries, vine leaves, and bunches of grapes hanging behind. Another face belongs to his beloved Ariadne.  The story of Bacchus and Ariadne exists in Greek and Roman mythology and another feature that indicates that the piece belongs to Roman Art is janiform - the way heads of Bacchus and Ariadne depicted. In Acient Roman myth Janus is a god of beginings and transitions while there is no equivalent to Janus in Acient Greek mythology. I can guess that the reasoon why Bacchus and Ariadne depicted in janiform way is that Ariadne was a human before she met  Bacchus and probably here we see the transition from the human to god. 
The statue is executed in bronze and it represents the Genius of the Senat.  The Senate was a deliberative body in the Roman republic and empire. It was influential because it was the only institution in ancient Rome that could legitimize power. So the author tried to depict the Genius of the Senate like a powerful wise and confident man of mature age. He managed to do this through the emotions of calmness and certitude on the statue’s face. It is s real portrait here, as we can see the wrinkles on the face of the figure and a long beard indicating on a mature age. The figure is dressed unlike the Greek statues. He is wearing a toga what characterises him as a Roman authority. Thus there are enough details to recognise a true person. The sense of naturalism in this statue is very obvious.  The pose is in action, the figure must have been holding something in his  left hand a book ort maybe a scroll. The way how the toga creases are depicted is very realistic. It seems that we can really feel the fabrics. 
The Casket of Scenes of Romance is an incredible marriage of medieval depiction. Made of ivory, the casket shows the artistic conventions of medieval works. High relief carving, a focus on narrative, the squat newly proportioned figures, and a focus on narrative are examples of this. There is a significant presence of religious narrative as seen, for example, in the statues of the virgin Mary.  The scene of Alexander the Great, the myth of the Fountain of Youth and the gospel depictions all take precedence on this casket. What I found to be fascinating is the idea of a casket portraying scenes of romance and of love. I could not seem to find the reasoning behind this or what the story was about but in reference to what we have studied, the casket is only for the dead. It is such a romantic idea to capture romance within an art object. If I was to analyze the funerary caskets we have covered hold a parallel in the important of narrative. To narrative serves to protect or relay the message of what lies instead, the gospel visual narratives speak directly to what is inclosed in the casket. We also see horror vacui, even inch is covered in decoration speaking to the narrative. 
This piece, dated back to the early 11th century, struck me with its beautiful and intricate patterns. It can be found at The J. Paul Getty Museum. A sacramentary is the most important liturgical book used in the early medieval church. It lays open on the altar where the priest celebrated the Mass while worshipers looked on. The vivid animal interlace style of medieval art can be vividly seen here, it's decorated with elaborate interlace ornament. We see the fascinating depiction of animal-like figures spiraling and the depiction of animals spiraling and twisting in undulating forms, which is very abstract and seen at a distance to be symmetrical but actually not. This characterist marks the most common in medieval art, so we can recognise the era easily.
This piece was found at Vulci. It is decorated with parallel rows of high arcs of tiny strips of gold sheet and patterns of gold granules. It represent the high quality of Etruscan goldwork, as well as their wealth and focus on the afterlife - such pieces were created solely to adorn the dead because of the thin sheet metal and weak fastenings. This fibula is an evidence of close cultural contacts and trade relations the eastern Mediterranean and is one of the many evidence to the existence of the common Mediterranean metaculture.
Description: This portrait is brutally realistic. According to some doctors, the slightly drooping flesh of the man’s right cheek and jaw may indicate that at one time he had suffered a stroke. Date Created: ca. 120 C.E.Sculpture was considered the highest form of the Roman Art. The realistic depiction of a middle aged man presents a person who served the obligatory military service and later served some important public duties. He has a thinning hair and sagging jowls and appears to be tired. Despite these unappealing features this sculpture conveys the sense of dignity and invites to physiological exchange of thoughts. The name of sculpture suggests that this man comes from the elite class of the society. The realistic manner differs from the earlier arts. Where the Egyptian art focused on preservation of order though simple and balanced lines and correct proportions, the Greek Art focused on beauty to depict the battles, mythology, and rulers, the Roman Art focused on extreme realism.
I have chosen this Roman sarcophagus with its four-sided heavily decorated style – and Roman/Greek temple roof shaped lid. The carving is in high relief with perspective achieved. There is also a hieratic scale retained with the Roman soldiers larger and more prominent than the horses and the Amazon slaves. The figures depicted are not entirely proportionate and the attention to the human and animal form not as detailed and perfect as earlier Greek art, however the influence of the frieze like classical Greek influence persists. The subject matter - the mythical Battle with the Amazons is also of Greek origin and in spite of a deviation on terms of style (the lack of detail is also evident in the flatness of the clothes and drapery) the Greek content is evident.  The sarcophagus was clearly made for an important person – possibly military leader – and glorifies him and his victory in battle. Victory, trophies, prisoners underfoot, all under a sacred shaped roof with powerful lion emblems suggests power and status. 
I chose this image because it seems to represent so much of the era. The metal and jewel work are some of the most identifiable conventions of Medieval Art. The practice of filling in any spaces and the geometric quality to Medieval art is easily recognizable here. The tiny pearls in rows add a delicate intricacy and interest in fine detail similar to other techniques in other medieval works.   I was struck by both the power and fortitude of the cross as well as it's intricate jeweled decoration. To me it suggests the strength of Christianity and it's preciousness, like gold and jewels. It also looks so regal and to me suggests the reign and power of Christianity. As the Cross became emblematic of the Roman Empire, this Imperial Cross exemplifies the confluence of imperialism and Christianity and the rule of Christianity. The symbol of the cross itself is a symbol of triumph. This Imperial Cross not only reminds me of a crown, but symbolizes the triumph of Christianity in the Medieval era. 
This Roman memorial sculpture is the sarcophagus showing Bacchic scenes (c.210). The image of Dionysus-Bacchus was associated in the ancient mind with the theme of death. It would take several pages to describe the story this sarcophagus tries to tell us. That's why I will try to pay attention only to the artist's work. This is mainly a high relief, the figures are depicted in complex poses and swift movement. In terms of style this piece of art is outstanding. Enlongated bodies with small round heads are shown with precisely depicted musculature. Very rich play of light and shade makes this  relief look very vivid.  The hair of the figures with its almost vegetative forms (strands of hair depicted in the shape of tongues of fire) create a bright contrast to their smooth bodies. The lions' manes are depicted a bit differently, and the muzzles, shown formally, don't look very lifelike. If we look at the whole scene, we can feel that there is some celebration taken place in this relief but the huge lions' masks with their  scary grimaces are giving a tragic meaning  of death to it. Plenty of uneven and torn shapes make the surface look  alive, filled up with light and shade. The style of this relief is very elegant, sharp with the sense of hypertrophy but it doesn't disturb the harmony of the sarcophagus. It is an outstanding piece of Roman art.
The Berket casket is a reliquary casket or in other words a container that contains relics of the deceased. These relics may be physical remains or some objects that were associated with them. The casket was made for the Archbishop St Thomas Becket who was murdered in 1170 in Canterbury Cathedral on the orders of King Henry ll. Three years later he was made a saint. The casket, with its boldly engraved figures, illustrates Beckets murder and entombment. It is a beautiful example of the cloisonné technique used in medieval art. The brilliant blues are made from champlevé enamel popular, at the time, in Limoges France. The repousse technique is evident on the heads of the figures adding a 3 dimensional effect. As well, clear cabochons decorate the top.
This is an interesting sculpture of the famous hunter Meleager. People can easily tell the identity of the lead (Meleager) here as he holds a pike in his left hand and has a dog sitting next to him, looking into his face as if it is awaiting his instructions. Similar to other sculptures at this age, Meleager stands in a natural gesture with a very specific and personalized expression on his face. This sculpture seems to be made with marble and the little bars between the dog, the pike and legs of Meleager shows that the artist creating this sculpture was trying to deliver the message in a realistic and natural way as far as he could.
I chose this particular image, as it was a little different and doesn't look like it is showing a lot in the first glance, however there is a great deal that can be understood from it. This image is from the Theatro di Marcello, also known as the Palazzo Orsini. The theatre was built during the end of the great Roman Republic by Octavian Augustus.             The image shows a profile of the Ionic order column, which was extensively used in this monument. As we have realised and learnt, the Romans did use a lot of Greek architecture as a base/guideline for their structures. Keeping that in mind they formed a unique style of their own. We can see this style in the Theatre from which this image has been taken. The Theatro di Marcello was built to hold a huge number of people/audience (almost 11,000). We know the Romans did most things on a large scale, as that was their way of portraying and showing that they were great conquerors and great rulers.                                                                                                                                    In this structure, we get to see the extensive use of engaged columns (something that the Romans included in their structural style) as well as a large use of Arches. The Arch was a Roman invention and was used widely in their architecture, as the Romans were masters at optimizing the use of interior space and this stricture allowed them to do  that.                                                                                                                                                                    The image shows a column, however it is a column, which is used in the structure of the Theatre and therefore I felt it was necessary to speak about the vastness and the architectural greatness of this building. It was of enormous proportions and it goes to show the technological advancement and the developed skill of the Romans.
Some of the most important Etruscan pieces of art that have been found in the Mediterranean region are the cylindrical containers made of bronze, called "Cistas". These elaborate containers were used by wealthy Etruscan women to keep their cosmetics, perfumes and other pieces of toiletry.Etruscan artists depicted mainly Gods from the Greek Mythology to decorate their beautiful bronze containers.The "Cista Depicting a Dionysian Revel and Perseus with Medusa's Head" was made between the 4th ad 3rd centuries in Praeneste, a small location in Latium a region near Rome. On the handle on the Cista we can see a Dionysian revel (party), and one of the participants is completely intoxicated after drinking wine and he is carried by two other Bacchanals. In order to understand Dionysian Revels, we should know about who Dionysius was. He was the son of Zeus and his lover Semele, a plain mortal. Dionysus became the God of animal and vegetable life. He was also mostly known as " The God of Wine" (in Roman Times he was called Bacchus). The Bacchanals believed that the God Dionysius was inside the "magical" beverage, and when people drank it they experienced the power and the life of their God inside of them. The bodies of these three people have the classic idealization of Greek bodies. They have muscles and postures well defined. The features on the faces on the other hand, have a more "lively naturalism", which was a characteristic of Etruscan Art. At the bottom of the Cista, we see Perseus, son of Zeus and Danae, who has the head of the defeated Medusa. Medusa was a gorgon who had the head of a beautiful woman, but the body of a serpent. Again the body of Perseus is rendered in the same style of the Bacchanals. The feet of the Cista are lion paws. Lion paws were generally used in Cistas.Etruscan Art has some Greek influence, but they also developed new artistic characteristics, getting to what we know today as the beginning of Roman Art.
I was looking for examples of medieval art and came across this belt buckle which is a splendid example of some of the key features of medieval art which we learnt about this week -  cloisonne technique, entwined animal patterns and the use of certain characters in intricately carved metalwork.  It was found during excavations of a medieval cemetery and it is believed that the grave where the buckle was found could belong to someone of high status (possibly royal descent) given the objects found and materials they are made from.The top part of the buckle shows a fine example of the ancient metalwork technique, cloisonne, where red and blue enamel has been added to gold metal compartments around the edge of the pattern.  In the top part and the main part of the buckle you can also see extensive intertwining ribbon serpent patterns which on first glance appear to be symmetrical but on closer inspection are not, which is quite common with this kind of pattern, it creates a bit of an optical illusion given the geometric design.  Near the buckle is an inlaid beltmount and a coin weight which feature a cross and the letters alpha and omega.  This suggests a Christian influence given the statement by Jesus in the Book of Revelations that "I am the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end".  In addition, this item and the fact that other valuable items were found in the grave suggest that these were all items for the dead person to take to the afterlife, again reinforcing Christian beliefs.
Due to the rigid and simple forms of this relief from 540 BCE, we can date it to the archaic period of the Greek art when the influence of the Egyptian art was quite strong. When I looked at this relief for the first time, I had very strange mixed feelings. At a first glance, I had a sense of stiffness and flatness of this relief, it looked to me more like an Egyptian piece of art. But the more you look, the more you feel a Greek touch in it. The artist was not very much content to follow any formula,he tried to experiment a bit, the relief is full of artistic conventions. The artist depicted two main seated figures of a man and a woman facing to the right  in some way similar to the Egyptian pose: the torso of a man looking in front, legs - in profile, the woman's head is in profile but with a full face eye. Unlike the Egyptian figures, hair has a simple geometric pattern, the face has wide-open almond shaped eyes and that archaic dump smile which makes the face more sensitive. Looking at the shape of the ears, we can feel the artist's attempt to express and investigate some human form.There is quite slight but still some sense of anatomy in this relief along with unnatural figure poses and the sense of body disproportions: the arms and fingers are overly too long, the face is too small in ratio to the body,very big and long noses with no nose bridge. The eyes and noses of the two figures of worshippers, depicted in the hieratic scale at the right bottom, are also huge and planted on the oddly shaped heads. In spite of the rigidity and unsophisticated impression of this relief , the artist paid attention to some details and decorative moments, legs of a chair resembling lion's legs,a rosette on top of it, the sacrifice items in worshipper's hands: a pomegranate (known as the "fruit of dead" in Ancient Greece), a blossom, a cock and an egg in worshipper's hands, a large snake,a symbol of immortality, depicted with more curvy lines. This relief is a vivid example of a blend of the Egyptian and Greek artistic conventions. 
The dynamic lines of the girl musician, two dancing males and the man with a stick were very naturalism, the corresponding body reactions demonstrates the deep observation of human bodies. The figure details were all in profile, including eyes and toes. This artistic convention of the classical period could be distinguished from the ancient Egyptian art and the Archaic period of the Greek art. The geometric figures depicted on the top and bottom of the krater were very common among Greek art works.The festive scene presented is also worth pondering as it conveyed the message that man enjoyed life, the humanistic idea might be enlightened by the philosophy that time, such as Socrates.It is evident that the krater is not merely a decoration but also possess the function of mixing wine and water, indicating the art play a significant role in both religious rituals and daily life. Furthermore, the wide use and delicate portrait of kraters implies the economic prosperity of Greece that time. Regarding the technique, red-figure vase painting made the figures standing out of the background, thus, more tridimensional and vibrant in visual effect.
Ancient Greek culture is said to be the cradle of early civilization that has continually exhibited great influence on the development of Western art movement in different periods. Although to different extent, many artists still today draws inspiration from the aesthetic and cultural values of the ancient Greeks that takes both abstract and concrete forms. Furthermore, various artistic features has marked the ancient Greece into different periods. For instance, the sculpture ‘The Peplos Kore’ (whereas Peplos means the traditional Western Greek outfit then and Kore stands for girl) demonstrates several artistic characters of the Archaic period. Firstly, the ‘kore’ stands in a less unnatural and unrelaxed poise because the art object was carved in a stiff, vertical situs. This also shadows the similarities in techniques between ancient Egyptian and Greek art, perhaps suggesting the early communication between two cultures. However, unlike the Egyptian art, the hair of the figure has simple geometric patterning, and in a way the human anatomy is depicted slightly more articulate than the Egyptian sculptures as it is portrayed in a more natural manner. Additionally, another feature that signifies the Archaic root of this sculpture is the apparent evidence of the classical ‘Archaic smile’ which is prevalently seen in the Archaic period of ancient Greece. The figure looks post-adolescent (with development of breasts) and illustrates the ideal female body of ancient Greece. Lastly, there is remained colours on the sculptures that evidently shows many ancient Greek sculptures were painted but the colours might have faded due to environment factors. 
This wall relief of a "Pensive Athena" is dated from c. 460 BCE, which corresponds to the Early Classical Period in Greek History. To understand what the artist tried to convey by sculpting this piece, we need to see it in the context of Greek History. This particular period was marked by Persian military invasions. In an attempt to defeat the enemy the cities of Athens and Sparta made an alliance. Even though Athenians and Persians were successful at defeating the Persians, many Greek lives were lost.In this relief we see Athena, Goddess of war and the patroness of Athens leaning on her spear. She is barefoot and wearing a Doric Peplos. What is interesting about the carving of the dress is that the artist played with the techniques of high and low relief to create a difference between light and shadow.Athena is wearing the helmet of Corinthian provenance. Even though her body looks strong conveying the strength attributed to the Goddess, her facial expression depicts the opposite. Her head is tilted and her expression denotes pensiveness and profound grief. Next to where Athena is standing, there is a "Stele" or grave that could represent the lost lives from her Athenian people. The reason I picked this relief, is because I was surprised by the fact that Athena, a "Goddess of heroic endeavor", looks so defeated when she should instead inspire courage to her warriors. The artist shows the mourning of Athena for the lost warriors. We see a Goddess, but with human feelings, eliciting empathy from the viewers.
450-425 BCE Terracotta:  made by a Phiale painter, a painter of the Attic red figure style used actively from 460-430 BCE. The red figure lekythos, a type of Greek pottery for storing oil, was often used in funerary situations. The red figure painting, one of the most important styles of figural Greek vase painting in the Archaic period, depicts the figures in red on a black background. Additional evidence of the Geometric period is shown in one of the top registers with a geometric motif. The unknown painter is telling a story depicting a woman at her toilette, naked in a beautifully feminine pose. The artistic conventions of Greece during that era are in full display here, the artist showing a delicate sense of anatomy and proportion, soft curves, hair, an oval eye with cosmetics and a serene expression. She is standing with a slight contraposto position with a tilt in pelvis and a twist of shoulder and arm.  The fact that her head and 1 foot are in profile indicates there is some influence from the artistic conventions of the Egyptians.Although nudity really defines Greek art in the Archaic and Geometric periods in sculptures, scenes of women at her toilette from the early 500 BCE were usually clothed. The fact that the woman is naked indicates that she was probably a hetaera or a prostitute. Her white skin contrasts with the dark background emphasizing her nakedness and vulnerability. Prostitution was a common aspect of Ancient Greece but they were viewed less respectfully in society. The artist put a few familiar household items, a small chest and a kalathos (wool basket) next to the woman. I sense he did that to show that all human beings have basic needs and are ultimately the same regardless of their stature.
This object serves as an iconic example of the transition of our focus from Egyptian art to Greek Art. The structure of the face is similar to the blockiness of Egyptian works but shows the beginnings of the Greek aesthetic. The sculpted face begins to incorporate a focus on naturalism. Rounded cheeks and contours of the face are mastered in the medium of stone. The stone itself is marble, native to the Aegean area. Marble can be chiseled but also polished to form rounded smoother lines. Large round almond eyes are shown versus the narrow slanted eyes of Egyptians. The hair is formed with whats seems to be a Mycenaenean dynamic line, full of curve and movement, while still remaining true to a geometric form. Fragments of pigment remain in the hair line which implies at one point this sculpture may have been fully painted. The carving quality is shallow, typical of Greek work. These shallow lines show detail while remaining soft and delicate, true to the idealized nature of Greek sculpture.
This late classical marble sculpture depicts through its curves, the freedom of movement and the freedom of expression and the ideal of beauty that artists try to reach. Although it is a vase and not a human body, we can obviously see the similarities with the classical way to sculpt body with the "s-curves" of the backs. And we can also see this sculpture as an early hellenistic period art, as it is also object that could be used as an ornement: " art for art's sake". And if I choose this piece, its because it really shows from where comes the art of today. It has a very modern look with its minimalist lines.
I  have chosen the hippo because until recently I associated this particular image with a benign animal. In ancient Egypt however the hippo was anything but. The scene we studied – Ti and the Hippopotamus Hunt has images of the Hippo under the water - representing the God Seth (the God of darkness). It was an animal to be feared and in this depiction the plants painted over his body signifying the marsh he trod through. Could the plants also be the crops he destroyed as he moved through them? I assume the blue symbolized the colour of water. What is interesting is that this piece has a much more realistic rendering than the depiction of humans during the same period. Even though it is solid and blockish it has certain fluidity and there is a lifelike accuracy in the object. It is also a fine example of the importance of animals and nature in ancient Egypt.Interesting fact – in tombs the hippo would often have a broken leg so that it could not harm in the afterlife.
Statue Group of Nen-kheft-ka and his wife Nefer-shemes from the Walters Art Museum ca 2350BCThis statue was found in a rock-cut tomb in Deshasheh, outside of Cairo.  I found this statue really interesting as it embodies a lot of what we learnt about Egyptian art and the conventions within it.  For example, the prominence and greater importance/seniority of the male (hieratic scale) in terms of his pose (he is slightly in front of his wife and his legs are slightly apart) and he is a lot taller than her.  This is no doubt because of his status as a mayor of the town.  Likewise, the paint residue on him is redder in colour whereas the wife is paler, indicative of the cultural differences of men being more suntanned due to their working environments.  It also shows the typical Egyptian style of very blocky, rigid human form with idealized proportions.
Figurine of Mercury 6000 BC - 1000 BC Located in Rijksmuseum van OudhedenArtist UnknownThis is a bronze figurine of Mercury who was the messenger of the Gods. As we can see, he is in the typical contrapposto position. His weight is on his left leg and his right leg is the free leg. The proportions followed seem to be 5:1 keeping in mind the canon rule. He also seems to be carrying the magical staff in his hand.Bronze was a very popular and common material used at the time apart from marble, as it was easier for detailing. Since the endeavour of the greeks was to constantly perfect their work to reach the form of a perfect Man, bronze was a suitable material due to the ease and flexibility of the metal in comparison to marble. He is also made nude, as most if not all Greek art at the time was made in this way to showcase and highlight the perfection in the work and in the figure created. 
This all black mummy with a falcons face (God Sokar) painted in gold is also known as a ‘Grain Mummy’. I could not find much information about it but just that they were mummies made from a mixture of clay, sand, and grains of corn presented as an offering to Osiris for fertility and resurrection of their crops. What interested me in this particular object was that it was completely black.  There are no inscriptions except for the falcon’s mask painted in gold and a small gold decoration under the mask where perhaps a beard could be. There are three rows of dots alternating with two rows of stripes and one zigzag. The last row is a completely different pattern of what looks like water droplets or flower petals. There is something about this mummy which seems almost divine and magical.  
This earring from the Greek late classical period represents Athena Nike driving a two-horse chariot. It is worked from all angles, which is important for a jewel meant to be moving on your earlobe, as opposite to such pieces as a necklace or a bracelet. The proportions of Nike follow the rules of the canon (with a ratio of 7 to 1), her expression is resolute and with her pulling on the reins of her whinnying horses, you can see movement and tension on the whole group. In terms of craftmanship, jewellery has evolved rapidly from the hammering technique of flat and geometrical figures to the lost-wax casting technique, with also details added by soldering and delicate carvering of the piece. This is a very elaborate technique and it almost haven't changed until now, we are still crafting jewellery pieces this way.Therefore it demonstrates that the jeweler has transferred the techniques that were developed in sculpture into his own art to realise this piece and that both arts were having the same concerns of moving to more naturalism, this search of perfection, and this wonderful and fast move forward in the way they were working and developing new skills.
This sculpture was created 300-100 BCE in Greece.  It was discovered in 1964 by Italian Fisherman.  It is made of bronze and now located at the Getty Museum in California.The statue is in contrapposto position with his weight on his right leg.  The artist had a clear understanding of anatomy as the figure’s pelvis is tilted and shoulders are rotated as a result of this stance.  There is great detail in the lines of the pectoral, abdominal, and bicep muscles.  The fingers appear real as they are curved so perfectly.  The left bicep, which is pointing to the figures head, is more accentuated then the right bicep as it would naturally be in a flexed position.  The lines are soft, curvy and dynamic.  This sculpture is detailed on all sides and meant to be viewed that way.  Naturalism was what artists of this time period strived for, which was certainly achieved by this artist.  The details of his body are so perfect that I see it as somewhat unnatural.  It is truly an idealized male figure which is consistent with the classical period. 
I d’ love to share with all you the image I have chosen for the project - Relief of Queen Nefertiti Kissing One of Her Daughters  (ca. 1352-1336 B.C.E. Limestone, painted, 22.2 x 3.4 x 44.5 cm. Brooklyn Museum, Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund).The image of Aten (Sun Disk with many arms) giving the Ankh (the symbol of life) appears on every representation and Nefertiti herself was a personification of this life-giving power of Aten and this piece illustrates this idea very well. 
Kanefer was an Egyptian prince and this sculpture was discovered in his tomb. Kanefer is not a king so he was not wearing the particular hair dressing or a false beard. However, he was sitting in the same gesture as other sculptures for kings with his son and wife standing and kneeling right next to him, respectively. Following the traditional Egyptian artistic convention, Kanefer, as the most important figure, has the biggest size, then his son, who was taller than Kanefer's wife. In order to show their close relationship, the artist has sacrificed the reality that the son's left arm should be shorter than what it displays in the sculpture and connect the two figures with the son's arm surrounding Kanefer's leg. 
Storage jar with Herakles threatening the centaur Pholos c. 480-470  or 460 BCE is a great example of  archaic period pottery. In the central register we can see the scene of the myth about Herakles and centaur Pholos. It is a black figure decoration. The artist not only depicted the characters of the myth but he also tried to tell the whole story by adding the emotions to characters and the wine jar which became the cause of Pgolos’s death. Besides telling the story the artist managed to frame the scene with elegant patterns on the sides.  The forms of the human and the centaur are natural and rather realistic. We can see different leg’s and arm’s muscles. But still the figures look a little bit flat like simply silhouettes. There is no  sense of three dimensions.  The interesting thing about this jar is that we can feel the great influence of Egyptian art.  The pose of Herakles is similar to the ones that are presented on Egyptian carving reliefs. Herakles’s is standing profile. But his chest is depicted facing forward, feet are out to the side, head to the side as well, but his eye is fully forward. The form of the jar shows the technological advancements in the control of ceramics. 
The red-figure drinking cup from the late archaic period represents a well-known scene of Achilles tending to his friend Patroclus, whose left arm has been injured by an arrow. What especially strikes about this fine piece of pottery is not only its elaborateness and the abundance of intricate details, but the fact that the artist obviously pursued a goal of showing us a turmoil of the situation, casually taking place after the battle. The wounded Patroclus sits on his shield, barefoot, the shoulder plates of his armour open, his head turned away in pain. The grimace on his face shows clearly that he is grinding his teeth, which, along with the bandage on his arm, are the only objects on the painting, in fact, introducing the third colour into a traditionally two-tone pottery, and thus drawing extra attention. His left leg is stretched and rests against the rim of the painting, thus not only uniting the two figures and suggesting the close emotional bonds between them, but also conveying the idea of dynamism and passion. To my mind, this scene perfectly illustrates the interest which Greeks, in their own way, took in what is happening here and now. 
This ceremonial goblet is elegant in its lotus-like shape and composition. The lotus’ sacred status in Ancient Egypt is echoed here in the use of faience,a finely glazed pottery (originally with a green hue from tin) often used for religious objects, and in its shape, blossoming open at the mouth. As the lotus was revered for its opening its petals every morning, it was a symbol of the beauty of life and of rebirth.The whole chalice is carved in relief, from base to mouth, depicting nature along the Nile. Papyrus plants are engraved vertically from base to mouth around the entire goblet. Their verticality and grace add to the elegance of the chalice and to the notion of growth and blooming. Typical of ancient Egyptian art, the piece is divided into registers. There are two registers around the cup, with friezes of animal life (with the papyrus plants continuing vertically behind the carved animals). The  lower register shows cranes dancing, and the upper register shows a cow nursing her calf, a bull,  and a lion attacking a calf. Birth, maturity, death. The lifecycle scene is carved in the register just below the mouth of the chalice--the mouth that echoes the blooming lotus, opening up each morning to the sun. Rebirth. As a religious object, it is symbolic and fragile, and embodies the scenes and beliefs of ancient Egypt. The ancient Egyptian artistic conventions are clear, and I like the utility of religious objects, even for only sacred occasions. The juxtaposition of life and death--the form of a lotus for a burial ritual, is fascinating and reminds us of the scenery of Egypt as well as cultural/religious concepts of the lifecycle.
Description: Marble over life-size head of Minerva set into a Neo-Classical bust. Minerva equated with the Greek goddess Athena, the virgin goddess of poetry, medicine, wisdom, commerce, weaving, crafts, magic, and the inventor of music Roman, 2nd century AD."The Greeks loved their g-ds [the Egyptians believed their kings were the divine beings from heaven] and associated mythology was vastly used to produce artistic output. She is called the goddess of wisdom because she was born from Zeus’ brain. As a daughter of the g-d of the g-ds Athena was very powerful herself. The bust demonstrates the head of a young woman who appears to be sleepy because her eye expression is not distinctive in line with the artistic movement of the time. But the emotion she conveys, sends a powerful message as if she observes the people of Athens. She is full of passion for people. Many myths emphases the wisdom of Athena and this bust tells the story of her inner beauty, which allowed her for example to concur Medusa and safeguard the people of Athens from Poseidon’s attempts to claim it its own. And the people gratefully founded the Parthenon on the Acropolis of her namesake city, Athens, in her honour.
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This user gallery has been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
Nationalmuseum Sweden
Nationalmuseum Sweden
The National Museum of Western Art, Tokyo
The National Museum of Western Art, Tokyo
Rijksmuseum
Rijksmuseum
Museo Poldi Pezzoli
Museo Poldi Pezzoli
The J. Paul Getty Museum
The J. Paul Getty Museum
The State Hermitage Museum
The State Hermitage Museum
Museum Kunstpalast
Museum Kunstpalast
Philadelphia Museum of Art
Philadelphia Museum of Art
Museo del Greco
Museo del Greco
Altes Museum, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
Altes Museum, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
Los Angeles County Museum of Art
Los Angeles County Museum of Art
National Gallery of Australia, Canberra
National Gallery of Australia, Canberra
National Gallery of Art, Washington DC
National Gallery of Art, Washington DC
Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien
Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien
The Frick Collection
The Frick Collection
The Munch Museum, Oslo
The Munch Museum, Oslo
The Toledo Museum of Art
The Toledo Museum of Art
Gemäldegalerie, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
Gemäldegalerie, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
Museo Dolores Olmedo
Museo Dolores Olmedo
Royal Collection Trust, UK
Royal Collection Trust, UK
Acropolis Museum
Acropolis Museum
The Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow
The Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow
Brooklyn Museum
Brooklyn Museum
Fondazione Musei Senesi
Fondazione Musei Senesi
Museo Nacional de Arte Romano
Museo Nacional de Arte Romano
Ca' Pesaro - Galleria Internazionale d'Arte Moderna
Ca' Pesaro - Galleria Internazionale d'Arte Moderna
Kimbell Art Museum
Kimbell Art Museum
The State Tretyakov Gallery
The State Tretyakov Gallery
The Walters Art Museum
The Walters Art Museum
Rijksmuseum van Oudheden
Rijksmuseum van Oudheden
Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields
Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields
LIFE Photo Collection
LIFE Photo Collection
SMK - Statens Museum for Kunst
SMK - Statens Museum for Kunst
Nordiska Museet
Nordiska Museet
National Gallery of Victoria
National Gallery of Victoria
The Phillips Collection
The Phillips Collection
Musée d’Orsay, Paris
Musée d’Orsay, Paris
Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek
Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek
Green Vault, Dresden State Art Museums
Green Vault, Dresden State Art Museums
The Art Institute of Chicago
The Art Institute of Chicago
Blanton Museum of Art
Blanton Museum of Art
Tate Britain
Tate Britain
The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
Treasury, Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien
Treasury, Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
The State Russian Museum, St. Petersburg
The State Russian Museum, St. Petersburg
Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen
Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen
Musée d’Art Classique de Mougins
Musée d’Art Classique de Mougins
Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest
Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest
Palace of Versailles
Palace of Versailles
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
Museo Thyssen - Bornemisza
Museo Thyssen - Bornemisza
The Victoria and Albert Museum
The Victoria and Albert Museum
Minneapolis Institute of Art
Minneapolis Institute of Art
Museum of Cycladic Art
Museum of Cycladic Art
Benaki Museum of Greek Civilization
Benaki Museum of Greek Civilization
Uffizi Gallery
Uffizi Gallery
Albertina
Albertina
Städel Museum
Städel Museum
Museum of Applied Arts, Budapest
Museum of Applied Arts, Budapest
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