Renaissance Ideals of Humanism Are Expressed in the Italian Art of the Period

Topics: Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Raphael Pages: 3 (960 words) Published: January 7, 2007
Discuss how Renaissance ideals of humanism are expressed in the Italian art of the period, referring to specific works and artists.
During the fourteenth century Italy witnessed notable changes, which throughout the next couple of centuries extended towards northern Europe. This was later described as the "Renaissance", "the cultural achievements through sixteenth centuries; those achievements rest on the economic and political developments of earlier centuries". (Western Society, 413) This was an era in which Europe emerged from the economic downfall of the Middle Ages and was followed by a time of financial growth, later leading to the Renaissance. But also, most importantly, the Renaissance was a period for artistic, social, scientific and political growth. Also, known as Humanism, one of the most important terms of the Renaissance, identified as "new learning". Humanists were recognized for trying to reveal learning's about human nature, "emphasizing human beings, their achievements, interests and capabilities." (Western Society, 420) The Renaissance ideals of humanism are expressed in the Italian art of the period, through the works of various artists like the recognizable Leonardo da Vinci who emphasized humanism ideals with his masterpiece of the human body with the Vitruvian man, there was also Michelangelo Buonarroti representing human divinity with his human sculpture of David Botticelli and finally, the impacting artist Raphael.

The Italian renaissance artist Leonardo Da Vinci can be recognized as one of the most outstanding artists of the period who, in addition, strongly expresses the ideals of humanism in works such as the Vitruvian Man. The Vitruvian man has become the most admired of human composition description. This piece expresses the ideals of humanism in the relationships of lengths of each part of the body. The entire sketch is based on rationalization of geometrical principles. Every part of the body has a whole number measurement...

Citations: Bracton, de Leicester. Humanism: "An Introduction". August 29, 2006
Buckler, John and Hill, D. Bennett and McKay, P. John. A History of Western Society. USA: Houghton Mifflin, 2006.
Renaissance. 1997-2006. August 29, 2006.
Socrates, Silenos. "The School of Athens". Ancient Worlds. ACC: May 1 2005.
August 29, 2006. <>
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