Renaissance Art

When people think of art the first thing that comes to mind is often images of grand galleries and cathedrals filled with statues, tapestries, and paintings. The Renaissance is the epitome of this type of art, characterized by artists such as Leonardo DaVinci, Michelangelo, and Donatello. Beginning in Italy in the 14th century, the Renaissance movement eventually spread its influence to all of Europe, revolutionizing art in society.

The Mona Lisa, by Leonardo DaVinci, is probably his most famous work and maybe even the most well-known piece of art in the world. The combination of detail, skill, and mystery have kept this painting in the spotlight for generations.
Another well known work by Leonardo DaVinci, The Last Supper. Painted on a wall with an experimental technique, this work is a testament to the experimental nature of painters of the Renaissance, despite DaVinci's failure to make the finished work last as long as established fresco techniques.
In addition to the rise in popularity of paintings, sculptors began making a comeback as well. Michelangelo was an extremely skilled sculptor and preferred it over any other medium, although he was also an exceptional painter. This statue of David is a testament to his mastery of sculpting.
While Leonardo and Michelangelo are considered the superstars of the Renaissance, they were't the only great artists of the time. Donatello was a fantastic sculptor and created many detailed works, such as a statue of St. mark and the relief of Madonna of the Clouds shown here.
In addition to the increase in classical style art, the Renaissance also saw a large increase in popularity of religious works as churches began commissioning artists to create works for their cathedrals. Filippo Lippi and his son both spent their lives working on commissions for churches.
Not to be outdone, architects also began creating more intricately designed buildings, cathedrals, and public offices. Inspired by classical work, Renaissance era architecture is a marriage of Roman and Greek architectural elements.
The Renaissance was an important period in art history, marking a radical change in the position of art and artists in society. Without the combination of social and economic factors present in Italy at the time of the Renaissance, we may never have been privileged to see the amazing works created by artists of this time.
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