Renaissance Timeline • 1323 Venice makes Great Council hereditary • 1343 Guild based government in Florence • 1450 Gutenberg printing press • 1452-1519 Leonardo da Vinci • 1494 France invades Italy • 1512 Machiavelli writes The Prince • 1546 Michelangelo appointed to complete St. Peter’s
THE RENAISSANCE Adoration of the Magi Botticelli
Renaissance Outline • What was the Renaissance? • Why Italy? • Education • City States • Venice & Florence • Painting, Sculpture and Architecture • Waning of the Italian Renaissance
I. What was the Renaissance? • A rebirth of interest in classical knowledge, art, architecture and thought • Rediscovery of classical texts (e.g., Virgil, Ovid, and Cicero) • Rise of Humanism • Transition from medieval scholastic logic and meta-physics to language, literature, rhetoric, history, and ethics
II. Why Italy? • Urbanization • 12.4% of population in cities over 10,000 • In year 1300 only Paris is larger than Milan (150,000) • Aristocrats lived in urban centers • Aristocrats and merchants less sharply defined
II. Why Italy? • Political structure • Local self governing cities • predominantly republican – rely on educated citizens • Urban pride • Patronage of the aristocracy and papacy
II. Why Italy? • International Affairs • Collapsing Byzantine Empire • Revitalized post-black death Europe
II. Why Italy? • Education • public life demands education • Best-educated upper class in Europe
Education • “Renaissance Man” - the universal man • breadth, not depth of study • “We cannot rightly understand one subject unless we can perceive its relation to the rest…”
Education • wisdom, virtue, thirst for glorious achievement, modest, devout (not saintly), dancer, poet, orator • these show “true” nobility • “nobility must be due to virtue alone” • The Courtier • Women gain access to education.
Gutenberg (1400?-1468) • Best known inventor of the printing press • starts with publication of the Bible • Changes Europe: • spreads of ideas of the Renaissance the Reformation.
II. Why Italy? • Italian wealth • Generated primarily from spice trade • Italy wealthier than the rest of Europe • Italian writers and artists stayed at home rather than seeking employment abroad • Growth of banking
II. Why Italy? • Marriage • different marriage age vs. Western Europe • women have higherdivorce/widow ratein Italy • age 15 90% divorced or widowed • age 25 97% divorced or widowed • large numbers of prostitutes • dowries increase in value.
II. Why Italy? • Family • necessary for dowry • holds key to prospects • more significant for higher status families
III. City States: Venice • Republic • Grows and establishes wide trading empire by 1400 • population is 10% of France but income is 150% • wealth concentration • top 100 families have 25% of wealth (top 1%) • 31% paid no taxes.
III. City States: Venice • Major Venetian Artists • Giovanni Bellini (c. 1430–1516) • Giorgione (1478–1510) • Titian (c. 1490–1576) • Characteristics • Their art reflected the luxurious life of Venice • Their aim was to appeal to the senses, not the mind
III. City States: Florence • Emerges from relative obscurity by 1300 • become bankers for Pope, grain merchants to Naples • becomes center of industry and banking • Oligarchic government (favors rich)
III. City States: Florence • Emergence of civic nationalism • “our city is more important than our children” • merchants offer all of wealth to the city for its needs • emergence of secular rather than providential rise and fall of nations • “humans, not God, determine human affairs.” • Rise of condottieri • mercenaries replace citizen militia • taxation and centralization.
De Medici family • Lived and dominated the city of Florence after 1430 • use of wealth to build political machine • marriage, loans, “gifts” and jobs • failure to join “party” of Medici meant political exclusion • example of the triumph of despotism over republicanism throughout Italy.
IV. Artists and Writers • General tendencies • Laws of linear perspective were discovered in the fifteenth century • Experimented with the effects of light and shade (chiaroscuro) • Careful studies of human anatomy • Growth of lay patronage opened the door to nonreligious themes and subjects
Horizon Line Vanishing Point Disappearing lines
Donatello(1386? - 1466) • Considered the founder of modern sculpture • goes through phases in his work - gothic, classical, and finally action • creation of David in 1440
IV. Artists and Writers • Renaissance painting in Florence • Sandro Botticelli (1445–1510) • Classical and Christian subjects • Allegory of Spring and Birth of Venus • Allegories compatible with Christian teachings
IV. Artists and Writers • Leonardo da Vinci (1452–1519) • Personified the “Renaissance Man” • Painter, architect, musician, mathematician, engineer, inventor, and artist • The worship of nature and the essential divinity in all things • The Virgin of the Rocks • The Last Supper • Mona Lisa and Ginevra de Benci
Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1527) • Renaissance man • kept drawing notebooks • rigorously accurate drawings • studies anatomy • sought to “portray the intention of man’s soul” • skillful use of perspective and vanishing points.
Helical Airscrew Architecture
Study of the human head Water lifting devices
IV. Artists and Writers • Painting in Rome • Raphael (1483–1520) • Portrayals of man as temperate, wise, and dignified • Disputà and the School of Athens
Raphael Niccolini Madonna
IV. Artists and Writers • Michelangelo Buonarroti(1475–1564) • An idealist • Painter, sculptor, architect, and poet • The centrality of the male figure—powerful and magnificent • David to celebrate freedom for Florence • The Sistine Chapel paintings (1508–1512) • Commitment to classical aesthetic principles of art (harmony, solidity, dignified restraint) • The Last Judgment (1536)