Renaissance Art

This paper discusses Renaissance art, specifically “The Judgment of Paris” by Lucas Cranach the Elder and “The Death of the Virgin” by Caravaggio.

This paper explains that both paintings represent a distinct style of Renaissance art, but each is from a different period and illustrates the differences that can occur during the same artistic period and the commonalities that hold the period together. The author points out that Cranach’s work added much to the German Renaissance. He was the first painter to create full-sized portraits, rather than just portraying the head and shoulders, and the first to create erotic nudes, which were quite popular with private collectors. The paper relates that the many commonalities in these paintings, even though they represent different times in Renaissance artwork, are the use of great detail and the effects of lighting.
The first painting, The Judgment of Paris, is tempera and oil on wood. It measures 40-1/2 by 28 inches, and the artist, Lucas Cranach the Elder, painted it sometime around 1528. Cranach was a German painter who lived from 1472 to 1553, and painted in the Northern or German Renaissance style. This painting is executed in the natural style, blending the figures in the foreground with the surrounding landscape. The detailed landscape behind the figures is as well executed as the figures, with detail that draws the eye from the figures to the background and back again. The background even contains a medieval palace on the edge of a soaring cliff, along with a medieval village off in the far valley, with a sailing ship floating peacefully at the village’s waterfront.

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