MCA 3

"Every age projects its own image in its arts." During the years 1600 and 1750, the Baroque art style was at it's peak. During this period, there was a shift of emphasis from straight lines to curves, a distinct and apparent contrast from extremely dark dark's and very light lights, as well as a focus on everyday life. Two artists who encompassed theses themes were, Nicolas Poussin and Jan Vermeer.

This painting by Poussin highlights the theme of darker than dark and lighter than light.The shadows between the pillars and the bright white of the horses coat demonstrate the great role of contrast. The setting of Jerusalem also implies the religious influence and religious turmoil experienced during the time period.
The Empire of Flora shows characters living in a pristine environment and could have religious significance. Being one of Poussin's first works in Rome, the classical influence is apparent with the freizes and cherubs.
Landscapes were a common type of painting during the Baroque period. The curvature of the clouds, trees, and hills show the different type of technique in comparison to the sharp. angled lines of the Renaissance period. In this painting, Poussin uses a daily-life scene which also posses great shadow and highlight contrast.
The portrait by Vermeer highlights the light coming in through the window by illuminating the girls face and front half, leaving the right side of the painting in the shadows. The darker areas are darker than dark, and the light in the window is lighter than light.
In The Little Street by Vermeer, he once again depicts everyday life and utilizes the landscape, another common Baroque theme. The clouds exemplify the commonly used curved lines and the buildings/ street show Vermeer's use of perspective, a theme from the Renaissance art.
Vermeer's paintings often reflected the daily lives of commoners and nobles which demonstrated the simplicity and routine lifestyle. The use of perspective was a technique derived from the Renaissance period, but is also in conjunction with the great contrast between dark and light features.
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