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Renaissance

The Rebirth of Culture

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Renaissance

Widely considered the most important and influential movement in the history of fine arts, literature, architecture, and science, the Renaissance marked the emergence of Western civilization from the Middle Ages into the modern era. Beginning in the 14th century in Italy, the movement spread throughout Europe by the late 15th century, the main centers of fine art activity being in Florence, the Low Countries, and Germany. The Renaissance saw a renewed interest in classical antiquity, particularly in Greek and Latin philosophy. Humanism emerged as the defining attitude of the age. TASCHEN has an impressive range of books that chronicle the impact of the Renaissance on the visual arts, most notably on painting and sculpture. Some of the most revered names of Art History made work during this period of time, including, Bruegel, Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, William Blake, Hieronymus Bosch, and Raphael.

The Renaissance artists’ mastery of linear perspective is one of their most dazzling skills. By utilizing techniques such as lighting, atmospheric definition, anatomy, and foreshortening they were able to make three dimensional forms appear much more realistically in the two dimensional space of a painting. Artists like da Vinci and Michelangelo excelled at representing human forms in a realism that had not been experienced before. Many of these artists’ accomplishments can be perused in TASCHEN’s books of complete drawings and works. Sculptors achieved similar success, as detailed in the publication Sculpture. From Antiquity to the Present Day. Artists like William Blake and Hieronymous Bosch deployed symbolism in their work, melding Christian iconography with that of classical antiquity into a new visual language. Religion featured heavily in the artworks of the time. Along with the natural sciences, biblical knowledge was spread fast through the invention of printing. An age of wondrous invention and innovation, the Renaissance set the course of Western culture for centuries to come.