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Renaissance Art (1400-1600)

Renaissance art began in Europe during the fifteenth century. Humanism became an important value to people during the re-birth of learning. In this time artists focused less on religious themes and developed an interest in Greek and Roman art including philosophy and science. Renaissance art developed new techniques of making art look more realistic such as using depth and shadows to show that an object or person was using space. Artists began to use perspective, which was demonstrated by using tints and shades of color. Foreshortening also became a well-known technique that began in Raphael's work. Renaissance artists, such as Leonardo da Vinci and Donatello, studied the anatomy of the human body to aid their art. Donatello mastered the contrapposto pose for his sculptures and da Vinci sketched human anatomy. Artists also used symbolism as a way to add meaning and emotion to their art. As for tools, tempera paints were exchanged for oil paints which could be layered and took longer to dry making it easier for an artist to work.

Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519)

Leonardo da Vinci was an Italian artist, inventor, and contributor to science. He mostly worked and lived in Milan and Florence, Italy. He is mostly remembered for his famous paintings including: the Mona Lisa, The Last Supper, The Annunciation, and many others. da Vinci made contributions to science through the sketches he made of human anatomy, plants, and animals. He is remembered for being a perfectionist in all of his art work, especially the portrait of the Mona Lisa.

Mona Lisa (1503-1517)

The Mona Lisa is one of the most famous and well-recognized paintings in the world. Though the painting doesn't have shading to show depth, it shows soft transitions between colors to demonstrate line. One can notice that she is looking forward, though her body is turned to her right. It is also pointed out that she wears a faint smile and though the reason behind it is uncertain, it adds an air of mystery to the portrait.
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Raphael (1483-1520)

Raphael was another main artist during the Renaissance he was both a painter and an architect. During 1504 and 1507, Raphael painted a series of "Madonnas" which were some of his most famous paintings. Most of Raphael's paintings are shown to reflect the church or religion in some way. Raphael painted several frescos for the Vatican and was even hired as an architect by Pope Julius II. Some of his paintings include: the Sistine Madonna, The School of Athens, and The Transfiguration.

The School of Athens (1509-1511)

The School of Athens, a fresco painting by Raphael, represents philosophy in the four branches of human knowledge. The main philosphors in the painting are Plato and Aristotle. Plato is shown to be pointing to the sky in reference to the his philosophical contributions to science, while Aristotle points down to show his belief in practical ethics. Other philosophors in the painting include: Socrates, Pythagoras, and Euclid.
School of Athens resized with Photoscape

Sofonisba Anguissola (1532-1625)

Sofonisba Anguissola was one of the first internationally known female artists. Anguissola was the oldest of seven children born to a wealthy family. She was born in Italy, though well-known throughout Europe. Anguissola studied art and was once acquainted with Michaelangelo when he sent her one of his drawings which she copied and sent back for his evaluation. Anguissola painted about thirty self-portraits throughout her life. She taught her three sisters how to paint and included them in her famous painting Lucia, Minerva, and Europa Anguissola Playing Chess.

Lucia, Minerva, and Europa Anguissola Playing Chess (1533)

Lucia, Minerva, and Europa Anguissola Playing Chess is an oil painting by Anguissola with a theme that shows how woman can be intellegent and rational thinkers. The wealth of the Anguissola is shown in the painting by the clothes the girls are wearing and the luxury of playing chess. The maid or servant is also included in the portrait.
Arnolfini Wedding resized using Photoscape
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