Discussion Topics and Issues Week 8-14

  • Issues to explore in class discussion and written assignments in weeks eight - fourteen:

    What impact did major historical events such as the Crusades, the Black Death, the spread of Islam, and the expansion of navigation have on the European mindset and resulting art?

    Why did the Renaissance happen?  Why did it begin in Italy?  Why was the epicenter in Florence?  Why do we hear so much about the Medicis?

    What is HUMANISM and what caused its emergence?  How can we see evidence of humanism in European art and architecture produced during the 14th and 15th centuries?  What impact does it have on formal elements?  How is it reflected in subject matter? 

    What effect does the emergence of art academies have on the history of art? 

    Why do we see so few female artists in this period? 

    What impact does the emergence of strong, centralized monarchies have on art and architectural production? 

    How do artists depict secular power and authority?  

    How do these images differ from those portraying religious power? 

    What impact did Popes Innocent VIII, Alexander VI, Julius II, and Leo X have on contemporary art and architecture?

    Why did Rome emerge as the center of European art in the 16th century? 

    In what ways is it accurate to call Michelangelo the first of the Mannerists?

    What impact did the beginning of the Protestant Reformation and the sack of Rome in 1527 have on the development of Mannerism?

    Why did distinctly disproportionate body parts appeal to the Mannerists? 

    In what ways were the Mannerists attempting to distinguish themselves from the artists active from 1500 to 1520?

    Why are the artists of Florence and Rome so much better known by the general public than those of Venice?  Is the work of Leonardo, Michelangelo, and Raphael inherently superior to that of Giorgione and Titian?

    What exactly distinguishes the Venetian style from Florentine and Roman art of the same period?