Judith and Holofernes by Donatello

Topics: Florence, Donatello, Cosimo de' Medici Pages: 4 (1485 words) Published: October 18, 2008
One of the greatest Italian Renaissance artists is Donato di Niccolo di Betto Bardi, who we simply know as Donatello. He was born in Florence around 1386. He was the son of a Florentine wood carder, Niccolo di Betto di Bardi. How he began his career as a sculptor is undetermined although it is known that Donatello was educated in the residence of the Martelli Family and got his first artistic training at a goldsmith’s workshop and from one of the sculptors working at the cathedral of Florence in 1400 (Web Art). Between 1404-1407 he also worked at the studio of Lorenzo Ghiberti. And he studied and excavated with Filippo Brunelleschi in Rome which made the known as treasure seekers (Wikipedia/Donatello). Donatello’s journey with Brunelleschi throughout Rome was conclusive for the development of the Italian art in the 5th Century. It is when Brunelleschi took his measurements of the dome of the Pantheon and other roman architectures and Donatello’s work was valued as supreme expressions the era and influenced the painters of that time. A marble statue of David was Donatello’s first famous work, it showed artistic style of Ghiberti. The Gothic style was graceful and had soft curved lines influenced by the northern European art. Later on his life Donatello had developed his own style which is know as schiacciato which means “flattened out” (Web Art). This technique was achieved by carving throughout instead of modeling his shapes. It was said to be like painting using a chisel. The carvings made were very shallow and created a dramatic effect of atmospheric space. Schiacciato panels depended on visual rather than tactile perception. Between 1420 until early 1530s Donatello continued to explore different techniques and possibilities on marble reliefs, his most developed work during this time was the Ascension with Christ Giving the Keys to Saint Peter. It was an exquisitely carved piece and its full elegant beauty can only be seen in a strong raking light (Web Art)....

Cited: http://www.wga.hu/index1.html
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