A Quick History of Art – Part 2

Art has been in the hearts and souls of mankind for a very long time.

Part 1 blog dealt with the dawn of art. The timeline started simple and spread through the highly elaborate time of the Renaissance. But there were other movements starting near the end of the Renaissance — movements that ran against the prim and proper esthetics of the era before them. Here we find a turning of the key. (Remember these periods are subjective.)


Palazzo del Te

Mannerism (1527–1580)

Mannerism is art that breaks the rules, using unorthodox colors or stretching body parts. Mannerism exaggerates such qualities as proportion, balance, and ideal beauty. Chief artists of that time include Jacopo da Pontormo (Italian painter), Barthelemy Prieur (French sculptor), Jacopo Tintoretto (Italian painter), Giulio Romano (Italian architect), and Benvenuto Cellini (Italian goldsmith, sculptor and draftsman). Major works include Palazzo Del Te, the Palladio, Rape of the Sabine Women (stone statue), and Perseus with the Head of Medusa (bronze statue).



Rembrandt van Rijn

Baroque (1600–1750)

This was the time characterized by great drama, rich color, and intense light and dark shadows, along with a highly ornate and often extravagant style. Chief artists of that time include Peter Paul Rubens (Flemish artist), Rembrandt (Dutch painter), Caravaggio (Italian artist), Gian Lorenzo Bernini (Italian sculptor), and Diego Velazquez (Spanish painter), Major works include St. Peter’s Basilica, the Taj Mahal, Apollo and Daphine (marble sculpture), and the Palace of Versailles.




Arc de Triomphe de l’Étoile

Neoclassical (1750–1850)

This movement essentially tried to revive the classical works of ancient Greece and Rome in the visual arts while also expanding in literature and printmaking. Chief artists and major works of that time include Gian Lorenzo Bernini (Italian sculptor), Jacques-Louis David (French painter), Adélaïde Labille-Guiard (French miniaturist and portrait painter), Jean Chalgrin (French architect), Jean-Baptiste Greuze (French portrait painter), Jacques Germain Soufflot (French architect), and Antonio Canova (Italian sculptor). Major works of the period include Alexander Palace, the Arc de Triomphe de l’Étoile , the Altes Museum, the Bogor Palace, and the Boston Athenæum.


Charles VI Frightened in the Forest of Le Mans

Romanticism (1780–1850)

This movement is characterized by a heightened interest in nature, emphasis on the individual’s emotions and imagination; a preoccupation with the genius, the hero, and the exceptional figure in general, and a focus on his passions and inner struggles; a sort of rebellion against Neoclassical art. Chief artists of this time include Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux (French sculptor), Caspar Friedrich (German landscape painter), Théodore Géricault (French painter), Eugene Delacroix (French painter), Francisco Goya (Spanish painter), J. M. W.  Turner (English landscape painter), and Benjamin West (American painter). Major works included Psyche Awakened by Cupid’s Kiss (statue), the Royal Pavilion, Ugolino and His Sons (statue), the Athens National Library, and Charles VI Frightened in the Forest of Le Mans (statue).



Realism (1848–1900)

Louis-Jacques-Mandé Daguerre

Realism celebrates the working class and peasants; the start of en plein air or outdoor painting.  Realism is recognized as the first modern movement in art. Chief artists of that time include Jean Baptiste Camille Corot (landscape and portrait painter), Gustave Courbet (French painter), Édouard Manet (French painter), Louis-Jacques-Mandé Daguerre (French painter and photographer), James Whistler (American painter), Honoré Daumier (French caricaturist, painter, and sculptor), and John Singer Sargent (American artist). Major works of this time include the Brooklyn Bridge and the Crystal Palace.


Impressionism (1865–1885)

Pierre Auguste Renoir

This was a time characterized by a concern with depicting the visual impression of the moment, especially in terms of the shifting effect of light and color. This is the era of some of the most famous artists in time. Chief artists this time include Childe Hassam (American painter), Claude Monet (French painter), Edgar Degas (French painter, sculptor, printmaker), Pierre Auguste Renoir (French painter), Édouard Manet (French painter), Mary Cassatt (American painter), Auguste Rodin (French sculptor), and Pablo Picasso (painter, sculptor, printmaker, ceramicist)




Post-Impressionism (1885–1910)

Paul Cézanne

Post-Impressionism emerged as a reaction against Impressionists’ concern for the naturalistic depiction of light and color. This era begins to encompass other styles such as Modernism. Again this era has brought many famous artists as Vincent Van Gogh (Dutch painter), Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (French painter, printmaker and illustrator), Aristide Maillol (French sculptor), Modernism Paul Gauguin (French artist), Paul Cézanne (French artist), Constantin Brancus (Romanian sculptor), George Seurat (French Painter), and Henri Rousseau (French painter).



Modernism (1871-1940)

Marc Chagall

Actually in harmony with Post-Impressionism, Modernism entails deliberate rejection of the styles of the past; emphasizing instead innovation and experimentation in forms, materials and techniques that better reflected modern society. Chief artists of this style include Georgia O’Keeffe (American painter), Charley Harper (American painter and illustrationist), Paul Klee (Swiss-German painter), Henry Moore (English sculptor), Marc Chagall (Russian-French painter and stained glass), and Barbara Hepworth (American sculptor).


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