February 6
Early Renaissance in the North and in Italy



Major Netherlandish Painters:
Robert Campin
Jan van Eyck
Rogier van der Weyden



Rogier van der Weyden
c. 1399 - 1464




Rogier van der Weyden. Deposition. c. 1442.





Van der Weyden's style:
Solid, three-dimensional figures
Individualized portraits
High emotionalism
Balanced color scheme



trompe l'oeil = "fools the eye," a form of illusionistic painting that attempts to represent an object as existing in three dimensions at the surface of the painting







Rogier van der Weyden. Portrait of a Lady. c. 1460.





Idealization = a process in art through which artists strive to make their forms and figures attain perfection, based on pervading cultural values and/ or their own mental image of beauty




Renaissance panel painting video







Second-Generation Panel Painter



Portinari Altarpiece

Hugo van der Goes. Portinari Altarpiece. c. 1474-76



Symbolism in Portinari Alatarpiece:
Grain = Bethlehem and Communion bread
Purple columbine = Virgin's sorrow
Red carnations = the Trinity
Discarded shoe = holy ground
Scarlet lily = blood and passion of Christ
Glass jar and white Iris = purity of the Virgin
Three Irises = holy trinity
Red Lily = blood of Christ
Columbines = sorrow





Hieratic scale = the use of different sizes for significant or holy figures and those of the everyday world to indicate importance. The larger the figure, the greater the importance






Early Renaissance in Florence



Early Renaissance Map

Map of Europe during the Early Renaissance







Historical Context
Joan of Arc liberates Orleans
Joan of Arc burned at the stake
Exiled Cosimo de Medici returns to control Florence
Platonic Academy founded in Florence
1445 Guttenberg prints first book
Turks take Constantinople
End of Hundred Years' War
Lorenzo de Medici rules Republic of Florence
Portuguese explorers reach Africa's Gold Coast
1484 Pope Innocent VII succeeds to papacy and outlaws witchcraft
Columbus discovers West Indies and South America





The early Renaissance in Italy was a period of significant social change
Decline of feudalism
Birth of capitalism
Period of exploration
Increased secularism







Renaissance Humanism
an emphasis on education and on expanding knowledge (especially of classical antiquity), the exploration of individual potential and a desire to excel, and a commitment to civic responsibility and moral duty
Renewed interest in classic Greece and Rome
Belief that Man was the measure of all things
Belief that humanity could achieve perfection through education
Valued a balance between faith and reason
Stressed man's superiority over nature
Interest and value in the individual
Goal: "to live a rich, noble and productive life within the framework of Christianity" - Stokstad





Middle Ages
Ideal life Monastic escape from society Full participation in rich and varied experience
Focus of philosophy The hereafter The here and now
View of humanity Man is completely flawed Man is always in trouble, but he is great
Arts glorified God Mankind







Florence Baptistry



1402 competition to design the east doors of the Florence baptistry



Filippo Brunelleschi. Sacrifice of Isaac, competition panel for east doors, baptistry of Florence Cathedral. 1401 - 1402.
Lorenzo Ghiberti. Sacrifice of Isaac, competition panel for east doors, baptistry of Florence Cathedral. 1401 - 1402.
Fred S. Kleiner and Christin J. Mamiya, Gardner's Art Through the Ages. Twelfth ed. Vol. 1. Fort Worth: Harcourt Brace College Publishers, 2005. 2 vols.







Gates of Paradise

Lorenzo Ghiberti. Gates of Paradise (East Doors). 1425-52.




"I strove to imitate nature as clearly as I could, and with all the perspective I could produce, to have excellent compositions with many figures." - Ghiberti







Jacob and Esau

Lorenzo Ghiberti. Jacob and Esau, panel from the Gates of Paradise (East doors). c, 1435.





Self-portrait of Ghiberti