Monday, October 19, 2015

Art Styles: The High Renaissance

The High Renaissance is widely viewed as the greatest explosion of creative genius in history. Even relatively minor painters active during the period, such as Fra Bartolomeo and Mariotto Albertinelli, produced works remarkable for their perfect harmony and total control of the painterly mediums. Simply put, this period represented a culmination.

Since the essential characteristic of High Renaissance art was its unity, a balance achieved as a matter of intuition, beyond the reach of rational knowledge or technical skill, the High Renaissance art style was destined to break up as soon as emphasis was shifted to favor any one element in the composition. The High Renaissance art style endured for only a brief period, 1495-1520, and was created by a few artists of genius, among them Leonardo da Vinci, Donato Bramante, Michelangelo, Raphael, and Titian.


Leonardo da Vinci is considered the paragon of Renaissance thinkers, engaged as he was in experiments of all kinds and having brought to his art a spirit of restless inquiry that sought to discover the laws governing diverse natural phenomena. The High Renaissance is generally held to have emerged in the late 1490s, when Leonardo da Vinci painted his Last Supper in Milan. Michelangelo has come to typify the artist endowed with inexplicable, solitary genius.

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