Artistic Innovations Of Renaissance Florentine Painters Essay

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Artistic Innovations Of Renaissance Florentine Painters Essay, Research Paper Charlotte Dean H3G-06/pd. 3 Mr. Valentin April 10, 2000 Artistic Innovations of Renaissance Florentine Painters During the Renaissance, many new, different styles of painting were developed. Many of these techniques were perfected by Florentine painters. Some of these styles techniques include perspective, life-like human forms, realistic looking objects and chiaroscuro. These developments began to form in the early Quattrocento and were slowly perfected by a long flow of artists. Their influences included new scientific discoveries as well as new outlooks on religion, life and visual perception of the world. Perspective was perhaps one of the most significant methods developed and also the one with

the most impact. It is still widely used today. Perspective is a method which is used to make a three-dimensional space or object appear three-dimensional on a two-dimensional space. It allows objects to appear closer or further away and gives them depth. This effect can be achieved by making all of the lines in a painting go towards a vanishing point on a horizon line. Artists also found that while using a horizon line and vanishing point, if you made one object in the painting which was identical to another object, but smaller, the objects would appear to be at different distances from the viewer.(see fig.1) ?During the early Renaissance, as humanism focused attention on man and human perspective, the viewer assumes the active role. Now, instead of projecting outward, space

recedes from the viewer?s eye into the picture plane.?1 The first person to begin using the perspective technique was an artist named Giotto di Bondone (1267-1337). In an astonishingly short amount of time, Giotto revolutionized the art of Florence. He is considered by many to be the true father of Renaissance painting. Since Giotto was from a time before the Renaissance actually began, his style consists of some methods which later came to be classified as Renaissance, such as perspective and curvy shapes(see fig.2), as well as some methods which are classified as Gothic, such as gold paint, large, fancy frames and immense haloes around the heads of all religious figures(see fig.3). Giotto?s best display of work is in the Arena chapel. Another contributor to the development of

perspective was Filippo Brunelleschi, a Florentine architect. He discovered that painters could use mathematical laws in planning their pictures. ?This shows an actual point of view through the technique of perspective.?2 It was he who officially ?discovered? the idea of the horizon line and the vanishing point. He figured out these mathematical laws using a series of different experiments including the mirror test. In the mirror test, he would hold up a mirror in front of a building and paint directly on top of the building?s reflection in the mirror. He would then place another mirror directly in front of the existing mirror with the painting on it. Since the reflection of the painting looked the same as the existing building, he knew that his efforts had been successful. One

of the final artists to perfect the style of perspective painting was Maso di Ser Giovanni di Mone — Masaccio. Since he lived during a later time period, his paintings abandoned all use of Gothic style and had strictly Renaissance characteristics. He was one of the first Renaissance painters to apply Brunelleschi?s laws to his paintings. When he used these laws in his paintings he was able to create the illusion of space and distance. He was one of the first artists able to create this illusion by using Giotto?s idea of making a system of lines head toward a certain focal point. His use of perspective can best be seen in his work ?Trinity.?(see fig.4) Masaccio is considered to be one of the greatest masters of painting. The second innovation which was developed by a Florentine