30 October 2010

High Renaissance vs. Mannerism

Art during the High Renaissance is that which was focused on human beings and portraying them naturally. Artists during this time began to use linear perspective by making their creations look 3-Dimensional on a 2-Dimensional surface. They were focused on the content and context of what they were creating because they wanted their work to appear as natural and real to what they were trying to depict. One piece of work that we can see this effort to create a realistic look is Michelangelo's, David. For this piece Michelangelo thought that this sculpture was going to be placed above everyone who observed it, so when he created the hand he made it bigger than normal, so that when those who looked up at the sculpture would see the hand as of normal proportion to the body. The reason that Michelangelo created the hand like that was so the body would be proportional to the rest of the body, and so the sculpture would seem natural. This is opposite of how Mannerism art worked.
Mannerism art was not always proportional. We can identify Mannerism in the Madonna of Long Neck by Mary's long neck and extra wide hips. Jesus also looks very unrealistic and un-proportional. Jesus, painted on Mary's lap, is much larger looking than an infant. Mannerism pieces seemed to go over the top of what was typical. Artists of this time would take what was normal and expected and push the limits just a little further. For example, in the Madonna of Long Neck, there is an "angel" with much of her leg exposed, which was very revealing for that time.
Mannerism works seem to be a little more exaggerated with the human body and it's positions especially. Michelangelo's art work during the Renaissance time also began to exaggerate some of the human body (especially the muscles). It wasn't until the time of Mannerism though, that Michelangelo really exaggerated the muscles of the human body.

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