High Renaissance and Mannerism PART 2

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High Renaissance

The High Renaissance and MannerismPART 2


Il Divno (the divine one)

Architect, poet, engineer, sculptor..reluctant painter

Sculpture superior to painting because of its divine power to make man

The idea is the reality the artists genius must bring forth-the absolute idea is beauty and originates in the divine.

Mistrusted application of mathematics to proportion (unlike Leonardo)-measure and proportion should be kept in the eye and the hands.

Asserted the artists authority over the patron-bound only by the idea. (artistic license)

Ultimate Humanist artist-a style of vast, expressive strength, complex, titanic forms with tragic grandeur.

Studied under Ghirlandaio but claims to be self-taught.



A complex, brooding genius. Solitary, tempestuous, willful.Michelangelo casts the mold for the persona of the Artist in Western Civilization.

Famous for battles of will with Pope Julius II.

Abstemoious (lived like a poor man despite great wealth). Rough, uncouth, dirty, melancholy, unsociable.

Devout Catholic

Homosexual, wrote love poems to Tommaso dei Cavalieri

Crummy father, wanted son to be a lawyer. Not impressed by fame, and asked son for money. (Daddy Issues ?)

MICHELANGELO BUONARROTI, Pieta, ca. 1498-1500. Marble, 5 8 high. Saint Peters, Vatican City, Rome.4



Commissioned by French Cardinal for Rotunda in Old St. Peters

pity or compassion

Created at age 23Michelangelo had dissected cadavers, shows knowledge of human body

Marys has not aged, seems younger than Christ (should be 50).

Christ has drifted into peaceful sleep, we feel the weight of his body pulled downward

Notice the odd proportions-Mary would be giant if she stood up.

Beautiful polish, luminosity- incredible transformation of stone into lifelike flesh.

Marys gesture-appears to offer her son as a sacrifice-the path to salvation.5


Weight of Christ lifeless body expressed in stone

"It is certainly a miracle that a formless block of stone could ever have been reduced to a perfection that nature is scarcely able to create in the flesh.- Vasari

MICHELANGELO BUONARROTI, David, from Piazza della Signoria, Florence, Italy, 15011504. Marble, 17 high. Galleria dellAccademia, Florence. 7



David remained important symbol of civic pride and renewed Republic of Florence (Medici family had become too powerful and were recently usurped)-Commissioned by Florence Cathedral building committee

Used a giant 18 block of marble that other sculptors had abandoned.

David shown before confrontation over Goliath.

First colossal nude since ancient times.

Career making piece for 26 year old artist.

Embodies Humanist ideas- celebration of the individual, and celebration of the artist as creator of divine works.

Contrapposto (of course)



David turns to look at Goliath.Doubt and fear.

Moment between choice and action.9

3 times the size of average human (17)

Involves the spectator by implying sculptural arena beyond the pedestal

Colossal size communicates heroic importance of mans actions

Potential rather than accomplishment. Looking towards challenge of the future

A celebration of mankind, here and now. The ultimate monument to HUMANISM.

Original plan called for it to be placed in a high niche in the Florence Cathedral.

Michelangelo adjusted the proportions of the head and the hands to be more visible from great distance.

Based on several classical models

Florentines loved so much they placed in front of the Signoria (government building) rather than the Cathedral. Potent symbol of civic pride-republic of tyranny.

Pope Julius II

The Warrior Pope

Chose the name Julius after Julius CaesarCommanded armies of the Papal StateTaste for the colossal

Huge art patron

Large scale projects required a lot of $$$, and many Church members saw this as indulging papal art, architecture, and lavish lifestyles

Used the visual imagery for propagandaCommissioned work to represent his authoritative image and reinforce the primacy of the Catholic Church

Sistine Chapel ceiling, his tomb, decorating of papal apartments


Tomb of Julius IIFirst papal commission for Michelangelo

Original design called for two story structure with 28 statues (unprecedented size)

Project interrupted due to lack of funds

Completed with 1/3 of planned figures- (Julius wouldve been very disappointed)

MICHELANGELO BUONARROTI, Moses, from the tomb of Pope Julius II, Rome, Italy, ca. 15131515 Marble, 7 8 1/2 high. San Pietro in Vincoli, Rome.22


MICHELANGELO BUONARROTI, Moses, from the tomb of Pope Julius II

Tablet of the Law (Commandments) under one arm.

Appears angry, almost in motion-pent up wrath at Israelites for worshipping the Golden Calf.

Musculature expresses energy and might. Strong influence from Hellenistic sculpture.

The "rays of light" that were seen around Moses' face after his meeting with God on Mt Sinai were commonly expressed as horns. (mistranslation of Hebrew word for rays).

Seated contrapposto

terribilita (awe inspiring grandeur)

Swirling beard and drapery full of energy23


Michelangelo vs. Donatello (Moses)

MICHELANGELO BUONARROTI, Bound Slave (Rebellious Captive), from the tomb of Pope Julius II, Rome, Italy, ca. 15131516. Marble, 7 5/8 high. Louvre, Paris. 31


Originally intended to add 20 statues of captives (slaves) in various attitudes of revolt and exhaustion to Popes tomb.

Figures embody powerful emotional states. Violent contrapposto conveys frantic but impotent struggle.32


Neo-Platonic Interpretation:

1.Trapped in matter-the individual struggling to be free from the earthly realm and re-united with the divine spiritual one (GOD).

2.For Michelangelo-also an allegory for sculptural form struggling to be free from inert stone to embody the platonic idea locked within as a divine work of ART.36


Mirrors our desire to break free of the cares and concerns of this earthly realm.37

Interior of the Sistine Chapel (looking east), Vatican City, Rome, Italy, built 1473. 42


Pope Julius II convinced Michelangelo to work on despite protestations.

5,800 sq ft, 70 ft high, 300 figures (completed in 4 years)

Biblical narrative of Genesis, (9 scenes) Creation to Adam and Eve, Life of Noah

Old Testament scenes placed in pendentives (David, Judith, Haman, Moses, Brazen Serpent).

Other figures: Ancestors of Christ, Sibyls, Prophets, nude youths.

THEMES: Chronology of Christianity, conflict of good and evil, energy of youth and wisdom of age.



Michelangelo Buonarroti, ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, Vatican City, Rome, Italy, 1508-1512. Fresco, 128 X 45.


Michelangelo Buonarroti, ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, Vatican City, Rome, Italy, 1508-1512. Fresco, 128 X 45.




Separation of Light from Dark

Creation of Sun, Moon, Planets

Separation of the Land from the Sea

MICHELANGELO BUONARROTI, Creation of Adam detail of the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, Vatican City, Rome, Italy, 15111512. Fresco, 9 2 x 18 8. 60


MICHELANGELO BUONARROTI, Creation of Ada.Includes Unborn EveGods arm leads to an infant Christ (second Adam)



Creation of Adam

Expresses the Humanist concept of God: an idealized, rational man who actively tends every aspect of human creation and has a special interest in humans.


Creation of Eve

MICHELANGELO BUONARROTI, Fall of Man, detail of the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, Vatican City, Rome, Italy, ca. 1510. Fresco, 9 2 X 18 8.



Sacrifice of Noah

The Flood


Drunkenness of Noah


Detail of the Azor-Sadoch lunette over one of the Sistine Chapel windows at the beginning (left) and nal stage (right) of the restoration process.79




ReformationLed by Martin Luther and John CalvinDisgruntled Catholics voiced concerns about sale of indulgences (pardons for sins), nepotism, and wealthy church officialsBreak away from Catholic church establish ProtestantismPersonal relationship with God not mediated by church

Counter-ReformationLed by Paul III, numerous initiatives (Council of Trent)Art as a tool for persuasion central to plan of action

MICHELANGELO BUONARROTI, Last Judgment, altar wall of the Sistine Chapel (FIG. 22-18), Vatican City, Rome, Italy, 15361541. Fresco, 48 x 44.85


MICHELANGELO BUONARROTI, Last Judgment, altar wall of the Sistine Chapel (FIG. 22-18), Vatican City, Rome, Italy, 15361541. Fresco, 48 x 44.86



Commissioned by Pope Paul III as part of the Counter-ReformationChrist as Stern JudgeTerrifying vision of damnation goes beyond SignorelliSaint Bartholomew (self-portrait?)Purposeful lack of beauty in many figuresRises on left, descends on right

Unlike other sacred narratives, which portray events of the past, this one implicates the viewer. It has yet to happen and when it does, the viewer will be among those whose fate is determined.