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Free «Renaissance Writers» Essay Sample

Renaissance writers, musicians and artists believed that they were living in an age of rebirth. What new developments in art, architecture, philosophy and culture substantiate this belief?

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Renaissance was a period in the European history when lots of new ideas appeared. Renaissance means ‘rebirth’, and this rebirth occurred in many spheres of life. In philosophy, humanism became the major thinking paradigm gradually replacing scholastics. Humanism was an intellectual movement which focused on studying the man. It was based on writings of ancient Rome and Greece. Philosophers focused on the problems of ethics (moral philosophy) and based their view of philosophy on Aristotelian approach. They challenged the supremacy of scholasticism. Prominent philosophers of that time were (Marsilio Ficino, Desiderius Erasmus, and Giambattista Gell, etc).  Similarly, the art witnessed the rebirth of ancient Greek and roman traditions. Also, it incorporated recent progress in the Northern Europe and recent scientific developments. New techniques developed, as well as different sensibilities. Some of the new techniques were the use of perspective, foreshortening, chiaroscuro, and sfumato). Thematically, religious, mythological, and history paintings were popular. In architecture, the elements of ancient Greek and Roman architecture got widely used. It demonstrated itself in the use of domes of hemispherical shape, niches, columns, and semicircular arches, etc.  The appearance of buildings was square and symmetrical. Renaissance culture, in general, absorbed the culture of Roman and Greek civilizations or classical antiquity. It was largely influenced by humanism and departure from the cultural deterioration and intellectual darkness prevalent during the Dark Ages.

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Explain the rise of Realism in relation to the prevailing styles of Neoclassicism and Romanticism.

Realism, whose major aim was to represent the surrounding reality the way it really was, started to develop back in 1830’s. It emerged as a response to Romanticism which tended to be over-emotional, focused on the spiritual part of a human being, and applied mostly to the elite. Unlike the elitist Romanticism, realism aimed to portray the truth of the society in small detail, so that the majority rather than the elite became the center of attention. As for its relation to Neoclassicism, Realism rejected its ideas similarly to those of Romanticism. Because it was largely based on naturalistic premises of the 17th century, Realism aimed to depict reality as it really was. So the historicism and abstract principles of ancient Greeks and Romans did not find way into Realism which valued the vision above all.    Thus, Realism rejected Neoclassicism and Romanticism alike. 

Compare the modern sculpture, Unique forms of Continuity in Space, by Umberto Boccioni to the Renaissance sculpture, David, by Michelangelo on . What has changed about the representation of the human body in the modern age?

 
 
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The sculpture Unique forms of Continuity in Space  by Umberto Boccioni represents futurism, the modern-age approach, while Michelangelo’s David was performed under the influence of the ancient Greeks at the peak of Renaissance period. It represents the human body from the position known as contrapposto (when hips and shoulder remain at the opposite angles), it is a bit disproportional, and portrays David’s beauty and strength. As for  Unique forms of Continuity in Space, it aimed at portraying some human probably, with emphasis on dynamics. In this modern-day sculpture, no Graeco-Roman tradition is found, the author represented dynamism. Also, it’s metaphorical in its own way: the sculpture is without arms and face. Just like our fast-changing world. So emphasis is placed on motion continuity. 

 How did the invention of photography in the 19th century change painting techniques?

By the end of the 19th century, lots of painters used camera as their tool, especially in portraiture. Also, introduction of photography led to introduction of pictorial abstraction and collage into the art. Besides, some painters in an attempt to reject the accuracy of photography resorted to more abstract art.   

 Compare and contrast the way Monet and Seurat painted the same scene. Why is Seurat not considered an Impressionist? Seaurat used divisionism (a typical style in Neo-Imoressionim), which encompassed the separation of colors in separate dots (also, patches) which optically interact. That was done with the purpose of getting close to the scientific ideal, which was thought important in arts.

 .6. What special characteristics of the cinema make it the most easily accessible artistic form?

- Television is easily accessible technologically

- Television is free or cheap

- Television appeals to a set of recognizable emotions and senses

- It combines a variety of arts and offers mass culture so loved by everyone.

   

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