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Romanesque Art and Concurrent Development of Gothic Architecture

By DavidPina55 Feb 26, 2014 3583 Words


Art Class

Gothic Art

Professor: Adriana García García

Enrique González Pinal

Classroom: 311

ID: 1582569

Was a style of medieval art that developed in Northern France out of Romanesque art in 12th century, led by the concurrent development of Gothic architecture. It spread to all of Western Europe, never quite effacing more classical styles in Italy. In the late 14th century, the sophisticated court style of International Gothic developed, which continued to evolve until the late 15th century. In many areas, especially Germany, Late Gothic art continued well into the 16th century, before being subsumed into Renaissance art. Primary media in the Gothic period included sculpture, panel painting, stained glass, fresco and illuminated manuscripts. The easily recognizable shifts in architecture from Romanesque to Gothic, and Gothic to Renaissance styles are typically used to define the periods in art in all media, although in many ways figurative art developed at a different pace. The earliest Gothic art was monumental sculpture, on the walls of Cathedrals and abbeys. Christian art was often typological in nature, showing the stories of the New Testament and the Old Testament side by side. Saints' lives were often depicted. Images of the Virgin Mary changed from the Byzantine iconic form to a more human and affectionate mother, cuddling her infant, swaying from her hip, and showing the refined manners of a well-born aristocratic courtly lady. Secular art came into its own during this period with the rise of cities, foundation of universities, increase in trade, the establishment of a money-based economy and the creation of a bourgeois class who could afford to patronize the arts and commission works resulting in a proliferation of paintings and illuminated manuscripts. Increased literacy and a growing body of secular vernacular literature encouraged the representation of secular themes in art. With the growth of cities, trade guilds were formed and artists were often required to be members of a painters' guild as a result, because of better record keeping, more artists are known to us by name in this period than any previous; some artists were even so bold as to sign their names. Gothic art emerged in Île-de-France, France, in the early 12th century at the Abbey Church of St Denis built by Abbot Suger. The style rapidly spread beyond its origins in architecture to sculpture, both monumental and personal in size, textile art, and painting, which took a variety of forms, including fresco, stained glass, the illuminated manuscript, and panel painting. Monastic orders, especially the Cistercians and the Carthusians, were important builders who disseminated the style and developed distinctive variants of it across Europe. Regional variations of architecture remained important, even when, by the late 14th century, a coherent universal style known as International Gothic had evolved, which continued until the late 15th century, and beyond in many areas. Although there was far more secular Gothic art than is often thought today, as generally the survival rate of religious art has been better than for secular equivalents, a large proportion of the art produced in the period was religious, whether commissioned by the church or by the laity. Gothic art was often typological in nature, reflecting a belief that the events of the Old Testament pre-figured those of the New, and that this was indeed their main significance. Old and New Testament scenes were shown side by side in works like the “Speculum Humanae Salvationis”, and the decoration of churches. The Gothic period coincided with a great resurgence in Marian devotion, in which the visual arts played a major part. Images of the Virgin Mary developed from the Byzantine hieratic types, through the Coronation of the Virgin, to more human and intimate types, and cycles of the Life of the Virgin were very popular. Artists like Giotto, Fra Angelico and Pietro Lorenzetti in Italy, and Early Netherlanders painting, brought realism and a more natural humanity to art. Western artists, and their patrons, became much more confident in innovative iconography, and much more originality is seen, although copied formulae were still used by most artists. It architecture was a style that flourished during the high and late medieval period. It evolved from Romanesque architecture and was succeeded by Renaissance architecture. Originating in 12th-century France and lasting into the 16th century, Gothic architecture was known during the period as Opus Francigenum ("French work") with the term Gothic first appearing during the latter part of the Renaissance. Its characteristics include the pointed arch, the ribbed vault and the flying buttress. Gothic architecture is most familiar as the architecture of many of the great cathedrals, abbeys and churches of Europe. It is also the architecture of many castles, palaces, town halls, guild halls, universities and to a less prominent extent, private dwellings. It is in the great churches and cathedrals and in a number of civic buildings that the Gothic style was expressed most powerfully, its characteristics lending themselves to appeals to the emotions, whether springing from faith or from civic pride. A great number of ecclesiastical buildings remain from this period, of which even the smallest are often structures of architectural distinction while many of the larger churches are considered priceless works of art and are listed with UNESCO as World Heritage Sites. For this reason a study of Gothic architecture is largely a study of cathedrals and churches. A series of Gothic revivals began in mid-18th-century England, spread through 19th-century Europe and continued, largely for ecclesiastical and university structures, into the 20th century. The term "Gothic architecture" originated as a pejorative description. Giorgio Vasari used the term "barbarous German style" in his Lives of the Most Excellent Painters, Sculptors, and Architects to describe what we now consider the Gothic style and in the introduction to the Lives he attributes various architectural features to "the Goths" whom he holds responsible for destroying the ancient buildings after they conquered Rome, and erecting new ones in this style. At the time in which Vasari was writing, Italy had experienced a century of building in the Classical architectural vocabulary revived in the Renaissance and seen as evidence of a new Golden Age of learning and refinement. The Renaissance had then overtaken Europe, overturning a system of culture that, prior to the advent of printing, was almost entirely focused on the Church and was perceived, in retrospect, as a period of ignorance and superstition. Hence, François Rabelais, also of the 16th century, imagines an inscription over the door of his utopian Abbey of Thélème, "Here enter no hypocrites, bigots..." slipping in a slighting reference to "Gotz" and "Ostrogotz. In English 17th-century usage, "Goth" was an equivalent of "vandal", a savage despoiler with a Germanic heritage, and so came to be applied to the architectural styles of northern Europe from before the revival of classical types of architecture. In the late 14th century, anticipating the Renaissance, Gothic Art developed into a more secular style known as International Gothic. One of the great artists of this period is Simone Martini.  

Although superseded by Renaissance art, there was a Gothic Revival in the 18th and 19th centuries, largely rooted in nostalgia and romanticism.  
The painting, sculpture, and architecture characteristic of the second of two great international eras that flourished in western and central Europe during the Middle Ages. Gothic art evolved from Romanesque art and lasted from the mid-12th century to as late as the end of the 16th century in some areas. The term Gothic was coined by classicizing Italian writers of the Renaissance, who attributed the invention (and what to them was the no classical ugliness) of medieval architecture to the barbarian Gothic tribes that had destroyed the Roman Empire and its classical culture in the 5th century. The term retained its derogatory overtones until the 19th century, at which time a positive critical revaluation of Gothic architecture took place. Although modern scholars have long realized that Gothic art has nothing in truth to do with the Goths, the term Gothic remains a standard one in the study of art history. Architecture

Architecture was the most important and original art form during the Gothic period. The principal structural characteristics of Gothic architecture arose out of medieval masons’ efforts to solve the problems associated with supporting heavy masonry ceiling vaults over wide spans. The problem was that the heavy stonework of the traditional arched barrel vault and the groin vault exerted a tremendous downward and outward pressure that tended to push the walls upon which the vault rested outward, thus collapsing them. A building’s vertical supporting walls thus had to be made extremely thick and heavy in order to contain the barrel vault’s outward thrust.

Medieval masons solved this difficult problem about 1120 with a number of brilliant innovations. First and foremost they developed a ribbed vault, in which arching and intersecting stone ribs support a vaulted ceiling surface that is composed of mere thin stone panels. This greatly reduced the weight (and thus the outward thrust) of the ceiling vault, and since the vault’s weight was now carried at discrete points (the ribs) rather than along a continuous wall edge, separate widely spaced vertical piers to support the ribs could replace the continuous thick walls. The round arches of the barrel vault were replaced by pointed (Gothic) arches which distributed thrust in more directions downward from the topmost point of the arch. Since the combination of ribs and piers relieved the intervening vertical wall spaces of their supportive function, these walls could be built thinner and could even be opened up with large windows or other glazing. A crucial point was that the outward thrust of the ribbed ceiling vaults was carried across the outside walls of the nave, first to an attached outer buttress and then to a freestanding pier by means of a half arch known as a flying buttress. The flying buttress leaned against the upper exterior of the nave (thus counteracting the vault’s outward thrust), crossed over the low side aisles of the nave, and terminated in the freestanding buttress pier, which ultimately absorbed the ceiling vault’s thrust. These elements enabled Gothic masons to build much larger and taller buildings than their Romanesque predecessors and to give their structures more complicated ground plans. The skillful use of flying buttresses made it possible to build extremely tall, thin-walled buildings whose interior structural system of columnar piers and ribs reinforced an impression of soaring verticality. Three successive phases of Gothic architecture can be distinguished, respectively called early, High, and late Gothic.

Early Gothic
This first phase lasted from the Gothic style’s inception in 1120–50 to about 1200. The combination of all the aforementioned structural elements into a coherent style first occurred in the Île-de-France (the region around Paris), where prosperous urban populations had sufficient wealth to build the great cathedrals that epitomize the Gothic style. The earliest surviving Gothic building was the abbey of Saint-Denis in Paris, begun in about 1140. Structures with similarly precise vaulting and chains of windows along the perimeter were soon begun with Notre-Dame de Paris (begun 1163) and Laon Cathedral (begun 1165). By this time it had become fashionable to treat the interior columns and ribs as if each was composed of a bunch of more slender parallel members. A series of four discrete horizontal levels or stories in the cathedral’s interior were evolved, beginning with a ground-level arcade, over which ran one or two galleries (tribune, triforium), over which in turn ran an upper, windowed story called a clerestory. The columns and arches used to support these different elevations contributed to the severe and powerfully repetitive geometry of the interior. Window tracery was also gradually evolved, along with the use of stained (glass in the windows. The typical French early Gothic cathedral terminated at its eastern end in a semicircular projection called an apse. The western end was much more impressive; being a wide facade articulated by numerous windows and pointed arches, having monumental doorways, and being topped by two huge towers. The long sides of the cathedral’s exterior presented a baffling and tangled array of piers and flying buttresses. The basic form of Gothic architecture eventually spread throughout Europe to Germany, Italy, England, the Low Countries, Spain, and Portugal.

In England the early Gothic phase had its own particular character (epitomized by Salisbury Cathedral) that is known as the early English Gothic style (c. 1200–1300). The first mature example of the style was the nave and choir of Lincoln Cathedral (begun in 1192). Early English Gothic churches differed in several respects from their French counterparts. They had thicker, heavier walls that were not much changed from Romanesque proportions; accentuated, repeated moldings on the edges of interior arches; a sparing use of tall, slender, pointed lancet windows; and nave piers consisting of a central column of light-colored stone surrounded by a number of slimmer attached columns made of black purbeck marble.

Early English churches also established other stylistic features that were to distinguish all of English Gothic: great length and little attention to height; a nearly equal emphasis on horizontal and vertical lines in the stringcourses and elevations of the interior; a square termination of the building’s eastern end rather than a semicircular eastern projection; scant use of flying buttresses; and a piecemeal, asymmetrical conception of the ground plan of the church. Other outstanding examples of the early English style are the nave and west front of Wells Cathedral (c. 1180–c. 1245) and the choirs and transept of Rochester Cathedral. High Gothic

The second phase of Gothic architecture began with a subdivision of the style known as Rayonnant (1200–80) on the Continent and as the Decorated Gothic (1300–75) style in England. This style was characterized by the application of increasingly elaborate geometrical decoration to the structural forms that had been established during the preceding century.

During the period of the Rayonnant style a significant change took place in Gothic architecture. Until about 1250, Gothic architects concentrated on the harmonious distribution of masses of masonry and, particularly in France, on the technical problems of achieving great height; after that date, they became more concerned with the creation of rich visual effects through decoration. This decoration took such forms as pinnacles, moldings, and, especially, window tracery. The most characteristic and finest achievement of the Rayonnant style is the great circular rose window adorning the west facades of large French cathedrals; the typically radial patterns of the tracery inspired the designation Rayonnant for the new style. Another typical feature of Rayonnant architecture is the thinning of vertical supporting members, the enlargement of windows, and the combination of the triforium gallery and the clerestory until walls are largely undifferentiated screens of tracery, mullions (vertical bars of tracery dividing windows into sections), and glass. Stained glass formerly deeply colored became lighter in color to increase the visibility of tracery silhouettes and to let more light into the interior. The most notable examples of the Rayonnant style are the cathedrals of Reims, Amiens, Bourges, Chartres, and Beauvais.

The parallel Decorated Gothic style came into being in England with the general use of elaborate stone window tracery. Supplanting the small, slender, pointed lancet windows of the early English Gothic style were windows of great width and height, divided by mullions into two to eight brightly colored main subdivisions, each of which was further divided by tracery. At first, this tracery was based on the trefoil and quatrefoil, the arch, and the circle, all of which were combined to form netlike patterns. Later, tracery was based on the ogee, or S-shaped curve, which creates flowing, flame like forms. Some of the most outstanding monuments of the Decorated Gothic style are sections of the cloister (c. 1245–69) of Westminster Abbey; the east end, or Angel Choir, of Lincoln Cathedral (begun 1256); and the nave and west front of York Minster (c. 1260–1320).

Late Gothic
In France the Rayonnant style evolved about 1280 into an even more decorative phase called the Flamboyant style, which lasted until about 1500. In England a development known as the Perpendicular style lasted from about 1375 to 1500. The most conspicuous feature of the Flamboyant Gothic style is the dominance in stone window tracery of a flame like S-shaped curve. In the Flamboyant style wall space was reduced to the minimum of supporting vertical shafts to allow an almost continuous expanse of glass and tracery. Structural logic was obscured by the virtual covering of the exteriors of buildings with tracery, which often decorated masonry as well as windows. A profusion of pinnacles, gables, and other details such as subsidiary ribs in the vaults to form star patterns further complicated the total effect. By the late Gothic period greater attention was being given to secular buildings. Thus, Flamboyant Gothic features can be seen in many town halls, guild halls, and even residences. There were few churches built completely in the Flamboyant style, attractive exceptions being Notre-Dame d’Épine near Châlons-sur-Marne and Saint-Maclou in Rouen. Other important examples of the style are the Tour de Beurre of Rouen Cathedral and the north spire of Chartres. Flamboyant Gothic, which eventually became overly ornate, refined, and complicated, gave way in France to Renaissance forms in the 16th century.

In England the parallel Perpendicular Gothic style was characterized by a predominance of vertical lines in the stone tracery of windows, an enlargement of windows to great proportions, and the conversion of the interior stories into a single unified vertical expanse. The typical Gothic pointed vaults were replaced by fan vaults (fan-shaped clusters of tracery-like ribs springing from slender columns or from pendant knobs at the centre of the ceiling). Among the finest examples of the Perpendicular Gothic style are Gloucester Cathedral (14th–15th centuries) and King’s College Chapel, Cambridge (1446–1515). Painting

Gothic painting followed the same stylistic evolution as did sculpture; from stiff, simple, hieratic forms toward more relaxed and natural ones. Its scale grew large only in the early 14th century, when it began to be used in decorating the retable (ornamental panel behind an altar). Such paintings usually featured scenes and figures from the New Testament, particularly of the Passion of Christ and the Virgin Mary. These paintings display an emphasis on flowing, curving lines, minute detail, and refined decoration, and gold was often applied to the panel as background color. Compositions became more complex as time went on, and painters began to seek means of depicting spatial depth in their pictures, a search that eventually led to the mastery of perspective in the early years of the Italian Renaissance. In late Gothic painting of the 14th and 15th centuries secular subjects such as hunting scenes, chivalric themes, and depictions of historical events also appeared. Both religious and secular subjects were depicted in manuscript illuminations, the pictorial embellishment of handwritten books. This was a major form of artistic production during the Gothic period and reached its peak in France during the 14th century. The calendar illustrations in the Très Riches Heures du duc de Berry (c. 1409–16) by the Limbourg brothers, who worked at the court of Jean de France, duc de Berry, are perhaps the most eloquent statements of the International Gothic style as well as the best known of all manuscript illuminations. Manuscript illumination was superseded by printed illustrations in the second half of the 15th century. Panel and wall painting evolved gradually into the Renaissance style in Italy during the 14th and early 15th centuries but retained many more of its Gothic characteristics until the late 15th and early 16th centuries in Germany, Flanders, and elsewhere in Northern Europe.

Conclusion

I can conclude that gothic art emerged after Romanesque art and it evolved all the stuff that thought as art and started to discover new ways to do art, not only by doing sculptures, its architecture change a lot consider the Romanesque art, perhaps in that time not only big towers and glamorous things were art, also the churches or maybe also the castles, because the castles have all the characteristics of architecture, sculptures, paintings, and all that stuff. Because of that a massive combination of sculpture, painting, towers start too born. That’s why they built cathedrals. Now about the painting, primarily it was the same evolution, but in that´s paintings i saw a different expression besides Romanesque sculpture, thus Romanesque paintings was more of emotions and Gothic was more from religion. Like New Testament, particularly of the Passion of Christ and the Virgin Mary. These paintings display an emphasis on flowing, curving lines, minute detail, and refined decoration, and gold was often applied to the panel as background color. In the sculpture, I understood that the Gothic art is represented by its architecture, but also by its sculpture, because it was amazing, fascinating, all that gods representations, about the angels, Christ, Virgin Mary. But with that love for represent all the things of religion, gothic art discover how to created a new form to give to all the people its magnificent works, and they created portable sculptures, like we have in these days, obviously its first work of portable sculpture was an example of Virgin Mary. Maybe the gothic art doesn´t have the love that deserve but it fantastic when you do research of that beautiful work. But were one of the second of two great international eras that flourished in western and central Europe during the Middle Ages.

Bibliography

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gothic_art
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gothic_architecture
http://www.artcyclopedia.com/history/gothic.html
http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/239728/Gothic-art

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