31 October 2010

Renaissance vs. Mannerism

High Renaissance art was realistic and the artists tried to create naturalistic works of art and something that you would see in real life. A shift from realistic artwork to more unrealistic artwork came with the transition from the High Renaissance to the Mannerism period. Michelangelo liked to depict people in really contorted and twisted positions in his later artwork, which is unrealistic of how people would ever really be positioned. He had an influence on Mannerism because of this unrealistic way of viewing the human body. Mannerism art is unrealistic and exaggerates certain features of the human body. The Madonna of the Long Neck shows how this style is unrealistic with the way the bodies are unproportionate. The woman's neck is longer than what would be considered realistic and proportional to the rest of her body. Her body, and the body of the baby especially, seem to be extra long. The length of the baby's torso, arms and legs do not seem to fit with his head and feet. Also, the baby looks really uncomfortable the way he is positioned and twisted in her lap. To me, this idea of creating artwork to be realistic or unrealistic seems to be the biggest difference between the High Renaissance and the Mannerism period.

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